Thursday, December 27, 2012

at least i made it in before the end of the year...

well, hello there.  seriously, if you're actually reading this, you probably deserve some kind of award for actually clicking on my blog in your feed.  because, you know, i've all but abandoned you.

sad, really.

and i'd love to have a good explanation..

oh, i do.  so, there's that.

so i had been offered that job which i started.  and i had that gallstone attack that required surgery.  but we've missed HUGE CHUNKS of my life (which i'm sure you barely care about).

now, october passed as octobers do.  i had held off on scheduling my surgery because i'm a fucking pansy and i didn't want to have it done.  we were preparing for the scatter-mom's-ashes cruise on october 29.  and i was working full time and taking 12 credits (which is, like, full time.  isn't it?  it sure feels like it).  so my days consisted of waking up, working, homeworking, sleeping.  wash, rinse, repeat.

i scheduled my surgery for the tuesday before thanksgiving so i could have a few (paid) days to recoup without actually missing a lot of work.  i ate carefully to avoid enraging my delicate gallbladder.  i hung out when i had time, attended school like a good girl, and spent a fuckton of time on homework and research.  the days passed quickly, one week bleeding into the next.  suddenly it was the end of october and time for croozin'.

my brother and sisterfromanothermister were going to the fest in gainesville before the cruise and we were spending a couple of days visiting friends in tampa.  we planned and checked weather and packed and checked weather...

...and suddenly, this storm named sandy was becoming a concern.

it was scheduled to hit florida and the bahamas before we were, and hit new york after we left.  i obsessively checked cruise websites and watched as the monarch (the same ship we were sailing on) sat in port canaveral for four days instead of sailing to the bahamas.  i read about ships missing ports and hitting really rough seas.  i worried about my brother and sisterfromanothermister's first cruise sucking.  we kept planning and kept an eye on the storm.  they weren't too worried about it.

that story changed once we were in florida.

suddenly, the jersey shore and south shore of long island are full of people freaking the fuck out - and we were 1200 miles from our home on the south shore.  our things, our cats, our cars (except for my brother's) - we couldn't do much.  i had a friend watching our cats and shit, but really - what could i expect her to do when she only lives four or five blocks north of us?

now, when i say 'south shore of long island', i mean lindenhurst. i don't know if i've ever been that specific before.  but when we were watching national weather broadcasts, we kept seeing them reporting a few blocks away from our house - places we pass every day, places we stopped and shopped.  our house is thankfully on a little hill (one of the only houses on the block that high up).  five blocks south of us is the bay.  one block to the east and one block to the west are both canals.  and two blocks north of us is another small canal.  so we are surrounded by water, with one tiny, old, barely two lane concrete bridge connecting us.

while we were on the ship october 29th, hurricane sandy bore down on long island.  between the astronomical high tide, the rains, and the storm surge, we had five feet of water in our area.  we watched reporters on montauk highway, a few blocks north and east of our home, reporting in water halfway up their thighs.  my friend sent us a video right after the first surge, and there was at least two feet of water running down her street like a river.  how is there current there?

the water rose enough to come over the bulkheads lining the canals.  there were bulkheads that broke loose and rested on people's front lawns.  there were boats that literally washed ashore in the high water and came to rest on lawns.  trees were uprooted, breaking up concrete sidewalks and streets, taking down fences and power lines.

we had an extra round of drinks that night and tried to relax.  there was nothing we could do.

we came home that friday, november 2nd, to a cold, dark house and two dead cars.  my beloved 2005 santa fe, the first car awesome husband @_antgas and i had bought, was ruined.  there was salt water filling the cupholders and soaking up the backs of the seats.  sisterfromanothermister's five month old chevy sonic was ruined; it must have been practically covered in water at one point.  our home was safe and dry;  @_antgas' car was barely spared - the salt water rose to within an inch of the opening to the car door.  the cats were fine, if not a little weirded out.  we came home with dirty laundry and nowhere to do it.  our only remaining car was on empty, and the gas stations were dry, out of power, or had hours-long lines.  we hunkered down in the dark for a few days, waiting.  we filled a cooler with some food and snacks.  we watched family guy on my ipad.  and then a second storm came - a snow storm.  the temperature dropped - our house temperature dropped to 48ยบ at one point.  we tried boiling water to help, but all it really did was fog up the windows.  we snuggled under extra blanket and cuddled the cats.

my dad has an extra car and he said i could borrow it - once i could find gas for it.  once i did, we went back to work.  we tried to have some normalcy.  we showered at my dad's house, relishing the hot water, went to work, ate dinner out, and came home to a cold, dark house with nothing but candles and flashlights.  our area had no power for 13 days (we were only there for 8 of them).

schoolwork had piled up, laundry had piled up, and nary a plan for american traditional familial holiday (aka christmas) had been made.  but i still had my surgery to deal with.  which went well.  i spend a couple of days sleeping and eating percocet, hanging out and watching like every fucking episode of american dad, and then went back to work with minimal pain.  i feel much better now.  even though i missed thanksgiving for all intents and purposes.

things are roughly back to normal.  however, my stress levels are not.  everyone was chalking my stressy attitude up to work and finals, but finals are over and i'm still stressy.  i'm trying to be more cognizant of my demeanor and attitude and shit like that.  and trying not to take shit out on other people.

oh, and our cruise was excellent.  it was just hard to remember how great it was when we came home to all that crap.  which is really sad.  but we enjoyed ourselves, scattered mom's ashes, and saw some friends in the process.  expect a blog with some photos of the cruise at some point in time.  i mostly promise.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

world's worst blogger's probably me.

seriously, i have people who actually (used to) read my blog.  and i ignore them for over a month.  like, a long time.

but let me make some excuses so i feel better.

as my regular readers may remember, i was offered a job back in august.  they wanted me to start august 22.  i was excited and spent too much money on office appropriate clothes and had my newly-brown hair touched up.  my hair was always reddish brown, until i started dying it pink.  but it's been nice having 'normal' hair.

and, you know.  not bleeding pink from my hair all over the place.

things were coming together.  right?


the weekend before i was to start my new job, we had a couple of days off.  i was temporarily done with school and was not going into the shop all weekend because of other responsibilities.  so saturday night and sunday night i went out.  saturday to my aunt's to visit with family (and drink a pitcher of margaritas while eating steak) and sunday to outback with awesome husband @_antgas and my girl... where i had a pitcher of mango skinny margaritas and more steak.

aside from my eating/drinking habits that weekend, i has this twinge in my chest, like under my right breast.  eh, i figured i tweaked something at the gym.

monday morning around 4am i woke up to pee.  my chest was hurting pretty badly.  i went to stand up and it was really hard. and i went to sit on the toilet and that was really hard to do too.  breathing was pretty hard.  basically, EVERYTHING was really hard.  i was wondering if i was having a heart attack, but my left arm didn't hurt.  then i was thinking maybe i like broke a rib or something and it punctured my lung.  but i could breath - it just hurt like FUCK.

i spent about an hour trying to lay down in bed.  i'd try to lay on my side... it hurt.  it hurt to sit up.  the actual act of rolling over was excruciating.  finally i woke @_antgas up and told him we needed to go to the hospital.

so he took me to the emergency room.  because the pain was in the vicinity of my chest, they rushed me right in and did an EKG.  then they rushed me right in to see a doctor.  i put my little robe thingy on and started getting poked and prodded.  they put an iv in my arm (ugh i hate that shit) and starting doing tests and X-rays.

everything was good.  and then they started talking about my gallbladder.

ergh, what?

one of my old friends had her gallbladder out, and she had SO MUCH pain like every time she ate, no matter what she ate.  i don't have that problem.

they ordered an ultrasound and a hitascan?  no idea how to spell that.  but it turns out my gallbladder is chock full of stones.  and they were like, well we can take it out now or you can go home and see if it happens again.

i was started a job in two days.  recovery time is a week.  i was like, um i'm going the fuck home.  so they sent me on my way with some percocet and that's it.  no advice on what to eat/not to eat or anything.

my gallbladder was achy for a few days, but no major pain. every once in a while it hurts again, but it's not been too bad.  i followed up with their recommended surgeon who wants to take my gallbladder from me and i'm terrified.  but then i was like, of COURSE as surgeon is going to recommend surgery! so i set up an appointment with my regular doctor and asked around to see who was recommended.  i didn't want some kid doing my surgery, you know?

the pain hadn't been too bad... until today.  last week my PCP said my gallbladder needs to come out and recommended a surgeon (whom i did some research on and is highly regarded).  i was like, whatever i'll call when i call.  i'm busy with work and school and an upcoming vacation and trying to get all of my vaccinations in order for school.  you know, life.

but today i had to leave work early and come home.  the pain wasn't too bad, but i had a fever and chills, and this strange nausea.  and just sleepy, so sleepy.  so i came home and ate light, napped for a while, and feel a bit better.  and called the surgeon.  i have an appointment with him next thursday and i will be scheduling surgery with him.  it's about a week recovery so i'm hoping to schedule it on like a wednesday or thursday so maybe i can be back at work monday or tuesday - that way i won't miss a lot a lot of work.  because i'm taking off the last week of october/first week of november for a family cruise.  more on that later.

for now, weep for my gallbladder.  i would prefer to keep my body intact, and i'm terrified of laparoscopic surgery because they'll go near my belly button.  and i'm not cool with that.  when we were little, my mom used to tell me and my brother that our arms, head, and legs were attached behind our belly button, like a puppet.  because we would play with our belly buttons (specifically my brother, he dug around in there like woah) (we were LITTLE KIDS.  gods, get a grip).

i mean, i know that's not true.  but you spend so many years avoiding your belly button and punching people who touch it, and it leaves an impression.  there will be an incision and, like, stitches there.  ergh.

have you had surgery?  what organs are you missing?  i've had two wisdom teeth out, but that's it.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

it's basically a computer... or an iphone.

posting from my new ipad. i should first apologize for, you know. never posting.

but i got this new job. and i really like it so far but i'm still busy. i actually have time to spend with awesome husband @_antgas and to cook and shit. and go to the gym.

then today was my first day of grown up school. i went to my first class at 8:30 am. and my second class at 1 pm. and each class is 3:45 long but only meets every other week.

so i still had to wake up early and shit. and i'm sleepy times now. so excuse me while i shove my face full of gyro and nap the evening away.

loves you.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

sorry for the YOLO

but shit has been cray.  (i generally don't approve of the use of the word 'cray', but you know.  YOLO and all.)

so, let's see.... last update was after my graduation party, right?  so you all saw how i was graduated as fuck and had a party with hella awesome cuppity cakes?  perfect.

after that i continued on my job hunt.  applying for customer service positions, data entry, and some basic officey stuff with non-profits.  switchboard for red cross.  appointment setter/intake for planned parenthood.  followup case worker for families struggling with HIV/AIDS.  shit that is in the human services field but not full blown social work. 

and just kept continuing on my job hunt.  and continuing.  didn't get a job at the place i used to work and they won't tell me why (which is really fucking annoying).  got two call backs for a place looking for 'marketing, customer service, and management' which turned out to be the asshats in, like, home depot who ask if you need your damn chimney swept (and dumb shit like that).  fucking pyramid scheme.

and then i continued to look for a job.  i agonized over telling my current job at the tattoo salon that i'd be leaving (or cutting down seriously).  at the same time, i agonized over my bank account because i was making nowhere near enough money to justify spending 39 hours a week in the shop.

awesome husband (@_antgas, remember.  you can follow him on the twitter and the instagram) had a delicate surgery planned for about a week and a half ago.  as i realized his income would disappear for two weeks and saw that i made a whopping $590 for the ENTIRE MONTH OF JULY, i ate a few tarzipan and took a nap.

as much as i love piercing, i agonized over the decision to leave or cut back my hours.  there are some problems in the shop, but the main problem turned into me making $3.70 an hour while working full time.  yes, i wanted a job with benefits to replace the benefits @_antgas may be losing when he goes back to school.  yes, i wanted a job with less nights and weekends so i could spend time with my family.  but in reality, as the surgery loomed and my savings dwindled, i realized what i NEEDED was a job with some money.

and because i have ridiculously awesome friends, someone offered me a temporary job helping out with the business they owned to make some money.  part-time schedule, i'd still be able to spend 3 days a week piercing, and i could, you know.  make money.

things started to come together.  and i had a call back for a second interview for a job i wanted.  i put everything on hold for a couple of days and hoped.  oh, and spent some time shuttling my ailing @_antgas around after his delicate surgery.

i purchased a blazer to wear for my second interview (seriously, i now love blazers.  why haven't i owned any before?  oh, wait, i had a horrid pink plaid one with matching SHORTS in the early '90s.  now i remember.) and showed up ten minutes early.  i had another excellent interview and went home hoping to hear from them - either way - by the end of the week.

well, that same evening, i received an email from one of the people i'd interviewed with.  she just wanted to let me know that she had forwarded a letter offering me employment to the top hiring manager and that i should expect to receive the official copy the next morning.

so as of yesterday, i have a job.  and a pretty kick ass sounding job at that.  it's all the basic data entry/customer service/reception shit that i've done (and loved doing) in the past, but for quite a bit more money than i've been paid for it in the past.  and benefits kick in almost immediately.  and i'll get paid vacation.  i mean, it's excellent.

suddenly, the dwindling savings account doesn't seem so scary because i know i'll be able to replenish it.

but i had to tell the tattoo parlor that i'll be cutting back.  i'm going to try to keep going in on sundays to piercer because i do like piercing.  of course, school starts in a few weeks and who knows what my schedule will be then.  the college i'm going to has a lot of saturday classes.  since i can't go to school during the day and i don't want to be in class until 11pm every night during the fucking week, i may see myself learning all day saturday.

which would leave sunday as my only day off.  and i treasure my time off.  after my mother died, i realized that spending time with my family is, like, really important.  and i have already missed too many family dinners and lunches and birthdays and shit like that.  i don't want to miss any more.

so by this time next week, i'll have started my new job.  i'll be back into the 9-5 routine (or 8:15-5 routine with a 45 minute lunch break).  and i'll be making bank, yo.


but, you know.  YOLO and all.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

and now i'm a college graduate. sort of.

so i finished my first two years at university of phoenix.  i applied for my diploma and should have it within the next few weeks.  i have an associate of arts in psychology.  and i have a 3.92 GPA.  which is pretty fucking sweet.

i've requested my transcripts be sent to my next school, st. joseph's college.  i will be starting there this september.  i'm working towards a bachelor's in community health and human services.  and i'll be able to take the credentialing exam to become an alcohol and substance abuse counselor.  which i'm really excited about.

i didn't get that job.  the job that i used to have, that i was pretty sure i'd get.  yah, didn't get it.  fuck that noise.  so i'm all over the interwebz throwing out applications and resumes like woah.  i've had a couple of call backs and am excited to get out there.  i've found some REALLY NEAT opportunities that i'm so fucking stoked about it's not even funny.

of course, i won't get THOSE jobs.  i'll get, like, the basic customer service job.

but there's a not for profit on long island that works with homeless and low income people who either have or are at risk for HIV/AIDS.  they are looking for a follow-up person.  so the case workers/managers, you know.  work and manage the case.  and the follow-upper goes and checks on the people to make sure they're getting and using the benefits and shit that the mangers/workers got for them.  which is really an amazing sounding job and i really want it.

i've also gotten a call back from a local cable provider (or a company that does their hiring... that better mean they provide their benefits too) and a marketing firm thingy.  they're opening new offices and are looking for customer service reps and markety people and all shit like that.  but i've applied for A LOT of jobs.  like 53 that i have information saved on.

fifty.  three.  jobs.

i mean, i have to get one, right?  and i'm qualified for all of them.  i have years of customer service experience, data entry experience, and reception experience.  i love working with people (even though i really don't LIKE most people) and am good at it.  i'm self-motivating, have good time management skills, and a very professional manner.

so, i have to get one.  right?


because i need a new job.  one with benefits.  so awesome husband (@_antgas, seriously follow him because he never tweets but often puts up funny pics on instagram) can work fewer hours and lose his benefits and go to school full time.  he really wants to get into school.  nursing school.  that will be fun.  i'm excited for him and i'm excited for me.  i never thought i'd be planning my future, but hey - here we are, planning our future.

i've just been so BUSY.  i planned a graduation party for me and it happened last sunday.  i'd love to tell you i have a fuckload of photos to post, but i don't have any.  seriously, i have like no pictures of this awesome party that i planned and pulled off.  there was food, a big tent, pretty floral centerpieces that i made myself, eight dozen quiche that i made myself, six dozen cupcakes that i made myself.

well, the cupcakes were from boxed mixes.  but i made the frosting myself.

we also had like a gazillion pounds of fruit that @_antgas cut up.  and nine liters of sangria.  and 84 bottles of beer (not on a wall, they were in a cooler).  and a fuckton of bottled water.  and twenty 2-liter bottles of soda.

and we have like two thirds of it all left.  people drank, like, 18 beers.  WHAT THE FUCK PEOPLE?

but we ate almost all of a 6' hero.  and the majority of the quiche.  so, there's that.

now @_antgas and i have buckets of sangria and beer to finish off.  which will take forever.

especially because @_antgas is having surgery on monday.  nothing big, people, just a little procedure.  he'll be in and out of the hospital in a few hours.  and will be home from work for two fucking weeks.  mostly playing video games.  and i'm hoping he can push a damn vacuum around too.

so.  since i don't have any really exciting shit to share, feel free to look at a bunch of pictures of me and my cats, whom you know and love.  

this is babyjakes blocking my bedroom door.  good job.

i am a self-professed shoe whore.  i love these shoes.  i have walked in the lace-patterned ones, not the black booties yet.  we'll see.

OMFG BABYJAKES.  he's too cute.

samantha cat, lounging

samantha and i, snuggletime on the couch

piggy mama, being adorable as always

me, on my way to my brother's engagement party

me again, at my brother's engagement party

thanks to my coworker.  i wasn't sure it was a trap.  glad i know now.

sammy baby sleeping on her daddy's (@_antgas) pillow

babycat jake after knocking over the cat toy box

my most recent tattoo addition.  bonus points if you can tell me where it's from.

me wearing an apron.  i was making a lot of fucking mini quiche.

my graduation party

sammy baby in her new collar.  there are lady bugs on it.

Saturday, July 14, 2012


first, an update: still no call on the job.  i emailed my first contact last thursday afternoon and haven't gotten any response.  i was thinking of pursuing it on monday by hunting down phone numbers.

but i may not be able to.  see, i'm about to start my final week of school at university of phoenix.  my last two finals that will be handed in july 22nd.  and then, within that next week i'll get my final grades.  and then i can apply for my diploma.

i'll have my first degree: associates of arts with a focus in psychology.  and then this fall, i'll continue my education at a local college.  two years from now, i will have graduated with my bachelor's in community health and human services, and i'll have completed the requirements to take the test to become a certified new york state alcohol and chemical dependency counselor.  oh, and i'll be taking a couple of hospice counseling classes.  because i think i'd like to do that too.

and a mere two years ago, i didn't think this was at all possible.

if you were around two years ago, you may have witnessed what was my last real nervous breakdown thingy.  i also started a new medication that kind of freaked me out

that new medication also may have saved my life.  i felt more normal than i have since... well, ever really.  and then we added tarzipan to the mix for my panic attacks (which i now am much better with) and i've been mostly okay for going on two years now.

so much has changed in two years.  just two years.  it's not a long time.  my blog's been around longer than two years.  i've lived in new york again for over a year.  two years ago i decided to go back to school.  my mom was still alive two years ago.

that's an odd thought for me.  and i think that's part of what makes me graduating soon so strange.  mom and awesome husband were supportive but surprised when i decided to go back to school.  i think they weren't sure if i'd stick with it.  what i couldn't explain to them (and still can't really explain well) is the difference the medication made.  pristiq made me feel like i knew my limitations.  i'm not as terrified that i can't go out in a social setting, or that i'll have to quit my job if i call in crazy one day.  i wasn't sure how to articulate that feeling.  but i knew i could do school.  and everyone was supportive.  i enrolled in school the first week in september.  i even accepted a new job in october and started training.

i had just started my second block of classes when mom moved up to new york.  it was november 13, 2010 when i drove her to the airport early in the morning to catch a flight.  it would be the last time i would see her outside of a hospital, but i didn't know that.  of course i didn't.  i spent that day at epcot with some friends and drank mead that night.

monday november 15th was mom's first day at the new job.  awesome husband and i went about our lives in the quieter-than-it-used-to-be house, comforting the two cats who seemed to be missing mom.

i spoke to mom a few nights that week.  her eyesight was bothering her and my brother took her to the eye doctor, who wanted her to get an mri.  she was terrified but we were going to make her do it.  but that saturday she emailed me and told me to call her.  when i did, she was upset and having extreme vision loss.  we convinced her to go to the hospital and, within four hours of getting to the emergency room, we had a diagnosis of metastatic lung cancer.

from mostly healthy but having vision trouble to metastatic fucking lung cancer in mere hours.

i was on a plane the next morning.  and mom cried when i got to the hospital.  i told her not to cry, i was there, what was there to cry about?  she worried that i wouldn't finish school because of her, because i'd miss too much work while i was in the hospital with her.

i didn't.  there was wifi in the hospital, and i had my laptop.  i'd sit next to her bed in ICU and do classwork.  my new job let me put the training on hold.  i helped her eat and drink, i helped her stay comfortable, i rang the nurses for her, and i did my homework - all right there in the ICU.

and when they told me not to bother going back to florida on thanksgiving morning, that there was nothing they could do but keep her comfortable, we started looking at hospice facilities.  we were lucky to get her in one - they didn't charge us because she didn't have insurance - and we moved mom there the saturday after thanksgiving.

they also had wifi, and i spent a week sitting in the reclining chair in her private room, helping keep her comfortable, wetting her mouth, and telling her i loved her - while i did my homework.

and when she died, i did what i had to do, took a couple of extra tarzipan, and made her proud. 

oh, and i kept doing my homework. 

i thought a couple of times about stopping school, but they were fleeting thoughts.  i never would have stopped, because of my mother. 

things were so different two years ago.  and maybe that's why it seems so strange graduating without my mom.

but two years ago, there mere thought of my mother dying was enough to put me into full panic attack mode.  i always figured i'd have to kill myself when my mom died because there was no way i could live without her. 

now i know differently; i've proven that monster of depression wrong.  i can be strong and do what i need to do, i can be a good daughter and a good wife.  and i can have a positive impact on people's lives.

i learned that all from my mother.

thanks, mom.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

i've got hives, they're multiplying.

i've been trying to save this up to have a big, happy blog post.  but i can't.  because things are happening/not happening and i'm really fucking itchy.

the last time i really had hives was when i was getting two of my wisdom teeth out, the only two i had.  one just popped out - they didn't even need to cut my gums - and the other had it's roots wrapped around another molar.  i was terrified of going under anesthesia and was convinced there was a good possibility that i'd die.

obvs, i didn't.  but it was still pretty traumatic to me.

now, you all know i've been applying for jobs.  as much as i love piercing - and i really love piercing - i need a job that has benefits.  awesome husband (should i just start calling him @_antgas?) wants to be a nurse.  instead of a diesel mechanic.  which i'm pretty sure qualifies as a mid life crisis (i'll have to google that in a bit).  but that involves school and not working full time because nursing school is, like, five days a week and the practical day is from 7am-2pm.  so he is hoping to cut back his hours at the shop OR become a personal trainer (omg seriously, this is what i'm dealing with) and make his work hours fit around his school hours.  because he wants to go back to school full time so he can get his RN in two years and get a job in the industry and go on to his bachelors in nursing.

but but but anyway.  i have to get a job that has benefits so i can, you know.  have benefits.  because happy pills and tarzipan don't pay for themselves.  and since my drug dealer/doctor recently doubled my dosage, it's even pricier to be normal.  instead of taking one 50mg pill a day, i'm taking one or two 50mg pills a day (he said i may not want to take two a day every day.  i'm with him).  even with our insurance, that's like $150 a month.  i can't even think about what it would cost without insurance.

anyway again.  i've been looking for a job.  preferably customer service or data entry.  i applied a couple of places that are social-work-y like planned parenthood, but i don't technically have a degree in anything yet.  so they don't love me.  i get it.

turns out the data entry job i had before and when i got married was hiring.  and i still know people that work there so i applied away and got a call for an interview within a week.  it was terrifying.  they changed buildings since i left and the new one is in a block of office buildings called jericho quadrangle (i'm assuming there are four buildings.  yes, assuming, you'll see why i didn't pay attention soon).  when my mom moved to new york right before she died, she had a job with a company in jericho quadrangle.  i was like, weird.  but still.

so i show up for the interview and drive around the parking lot looking for a spot.  some of the spots were reserved for different companies, including one called aon.  it was familiar but i couldn't tell why and i was nervous so i parked and went inside.  checking the directory, i realized why aon sounded familiar: aon is the parent company of the travel insurance company my mother was working for.  i had to communicate with them when she died.  i took that as a good sign, that mom might have been looking out for me.

the first interview seemed to go really well.  i was interviewed by a guy i used to work with and it was fun.  the new building seemed really nice and i was superexcited when he told me they'd call me back early next week (my interview was on a thursday).  i hobbled out on my 4" wedge heels, smiling, and got in the elevator.

that monday i got a call to come back for a second interview.  i was so excited!  this was july 2 and they wanted me to come back july 5.  i started planning what i should wear (different shoes, for one) and thought about how i'd make it through three days waiting.  thursday i went for the second interview and interviewed with two people.  i thought it went exceptionally well and, i mean, i know the job already.  why wouldn't they hire me, right?  i walked out to the elevators on the third floor and pressed the button.  there were a couple of people standing talking at the entrance to the only other suite on the floor, and i looked over just because sometimes you happen to do that.  that suite?

it was aon affininty berkely travel.  the travel insurance company my mom was working for when she died.

it made me sad and happy at the same time.  i felt like mom was trying to say something to me.  i had a dream with her in it that night, which i also took as a good sign.  they had told me they had a couple more people to interview and would call me early in the week.

it's wednesday.  i still haven't heard from them.  i was hoping to hear from them on monday, but no one wants to do shit on mondays.  so i was like, i'll hear from them tuesday.  i started getting itchy monday night.  not bad, but a bit itchy.  i set up to have all the phone calls to the house number ring my cell phone too, so even if i was out or at the shop i could take the call.

tuesday morning, i woke up itchy and excited.  i figured it would be the day.  i really want this job because i want awesome husband/@_antgas to be able to pursue his dreams like i've started pursuing mine (OMG I KNOW IT SOUNDS LAME).  i know there are a lot of opportunities with the company and i know it's a great company to work for and i know they have great benefits and i know i would not hate the job and i know i would rock the fucking socks off the job and i know i'm probably overqualified for the job.

it's an entry level data entry job.  i got hired for the same job 11 years ago with a bunch of food service and a little customer service experience.  i am now 12 days away from my associate of arts, have gained a lot more customer service experience, as well as a/r and a/p experience, have managed others, have supervised and been responsible for customer satisfaction for a group of 80+ agents, and have owned my own company.

this occurred to me yesterday morning.  so i started itching even more.  and then i went to the shop and my phone didn't ring.  i did a couple of piercings and kept itching.  by the time i got home, my feet, ankles, and thighs were sofuckingitchy and i was trying not to freak out because i'm unsure they'll hire me now.

i've stopped filling out applications and sending out my resume.  i was turned down by two other customer service positions in the area.  i sent out about 18 resumes to other customer service and data entry jobs.  and the job i found in a homeless shelter that would basically be perfect based on my degree?  over 5K other people IN THE AREA applied for it.

i started itching more.  this morning, my elbows and upper arms joined in.  and now my back it itchy.  i'm trying to just remain calm and not itch, but it's after 3pm eastern time and they still haven't called.  they'd call if they weren't going to hire me, right?  people do that?  the other two did.

so i'm going to sit here and itch until i get some word.  want to follow my itching and find out the status of my jobs first?  follow me @stephgas on twitter.  want to see pictures of my cats and stupid shit i see around the town?  follow me @stephgas on instagram.  want to stalk me?  foursquare.

it's so easy to be a stalker, thanks to the internet.  too bad i can't get a job as a stalker.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

crockpot crazy

i have a handful of go-to recipes i make in my crock pot.  moroccon beef stew.  chili.  black beans.  occasional soups.  but i've never really ROCKED my crock.

until now.  thanks to @misstattootara, who has a pinning obsession (as do i, find me on pinterest @stephgas.  same for instagram) and pins a lot of slow cooker meals, i've started compiling a bucket of new slow cooker recipes for awesome husband and i to enjoy (since i'm plugging everyone's fucking twitter and pinterest, you can find awesome husband @_antgas on both twitter and instagram). 

i tried a sesame chicken the other day which turned out less than awesome (leftovers were tossed.  that kind of 'less than awesome').  but i found a lot of great blogs with photos and recipes of slow cooker meals.

while reading them, i realized something: both of my crocks are timer-free.  i have a 4 quart and a 6 quart, one for meat and one for veg.  it turns out i cook vegetarian crock pot meals for my brother about once a year, so a separate one is not necessary.  ONCE i made chili for the family, and one crock was meat, one crock was faux meat.  ONCE.  in an entire year.

so i'm donating my gently used 4 quart (hanging onto the 6 quart in case i need to make 'fill in the blank' for a crowd) and purchased a shiny new cuisinart 3.5 quart slow cooker with a timer function.  i set the timer for however many hours, set it to high, low, or simmer, and walk away.  after the time is up, it automatically switches to the warm setting for up to eight hours. 

last week with my sesame chicken debacle, i set it for 6.5 hours, went to work, came home 8 hours later and it was perfect - cooked through and still hot (it was the sauce that ruined the meal, not the cooking).

today i'm trying another recipe - orange beef.  i've never even ordered orange beef from a chinese restaurant, so we'll see how this goes.  credit where credit is due, i snatched this recipe from stephanie o'dea who challenged herself to make something DIFFERENT in her crock EVERY DAY FOR A YEAR.  and she has a fuckton of awesome recipes on her blog, including slow cooker orange beef.

i have to modify each recipe a bit as i go because i'm cooking for 2 (usually get three servings) but like, in this recipe, she uses 1.5 pounds of beef... i'm using 3/4 of a pound.  so i cut everything in half.  i also may end up reducing the time a bit here and there as i get used to how my new crock works.  since it's a bit smaller (she uses a 4 quart for many of her meals) and i'm filling it a bit less, it *should* even out, right?


anyway.  so last night i sliced up my eye round (on sale at stop & shop, i hate paying full price for meat) and popped it in a reuseable, resealable container (not a tupperware, since that's a brand name and i own, like, two things from tupperware) along with the ingredients called for.

i gently threw it in the fridge and have given it a toss each time i'm in the fridge.  now i'll be dumping it in the crock, along with a bunch of frozen veg.  that's right, fuck fresh.

no, not fuck fresh.  it's just, frozen veg are just as good for you and hold longer and are less expensive when i buy them on sale (yes, i also fucking detest paying full price for frozen vegetables.  there are few things i enjoy paying full price for...).  one medium pepper, sliced, should yield roughly a cup.  and i'm halving this recipe... but i love me some veggies.  so i'm going to add a cup and a half of mixed peppers to my crock.  i'm also going to toss in a scant 1/2 cup of chopped onion too, because i'm too lazy to buy green onions and i love nice, smushy onions cooked in the crock pot.  like stephanie o'dea's daughters, i don't eat bok choy and saw no reason to waste money on something i don't like to eat.  so i left that out too.

then i set my crock for 6 hours (i'm erring on the low side of the time because it's a smaller portion), set it for low, and go to work! 

we'll see how it comes out when i come home tonight...


so i came home about a quarter after 8.  i opened the crock and found this....

i guess that sheen is a bit of fat from the meat floating on top.  no biggie, right?

it was a bit liquidy, probably because i used frozen vegetables so they release a bit of liquid.  i reheated some brown rice i had left over from the sesame chicken debacle and awesome husband and i sat down to this....

pretty much yum.  the flavor was delicious.  i can see it might be a bit better with fresh veg, but i'm a busy fucking woman.  but it was very good.  i'll just cut back on the liquid next time.

so there you have it.  i'm going to post stuff about my crock adventures as well as the normal other shit.

i got a call back on the job interview i went on last week, which is a great sign.  i can't wait until thursday to see what happens!

have a safe and happy fourth of july everyone!

Friday, June 29, 2012

welp, here we are again.  me, not posting often enough.  you, reading without pants (at least, i hope you are.  i'm currently wearing really short terry cloth shorts because they're the closest thing to 'not pants' i can wear in front of my brother).  i've just been busy.  and the funny thing is i have SO MUCH to say.  i keep having great ideas that i need to blog about... and it just never happens.

i've recently upped my daily dose of 'normal pills' (well, my doctor did) and i've been feeling a bit 'flat'.  anyone who has had experience with antidepressants/antipsychotics/drug dealer doctors/etc knows what flat affect is.  it means you feel like nothing.  yes, you don't feel crippling depression or the need to cry every hour, but you don't really feel happiness or joy or the desire to do anything.

like, i'm going to the gym today.  but i don't really want to.  and i don't really care if i do. 

actually, the only 'things' i'm really feeling are fear and nervousness.  and anxiety a bit, i guess.  the fear part comes from the fact that my brother informed me at 1am that his part of the house is still overrun with earwigs. 

i. fucking. hate. earwigs. 

they are my most hated/feared insecty thingy.  i hate them and scorpions, but thankfully scorpions only exist as pets (to crazy fucking asshats) in new york.  (really, who wants a pet with claws AND a stinger??!??!?!?!!??!?!?!?!?!?)


we live down by the water.  it's been rainy.  earwigs like dark and wet places.  like the foundation around our house.  and if they can find a way into a home, they're like 'oh, this looks like a fun adventure!  let's see if we can make stephgas chase us around like an idiot and kill me like a champ (sorry, the photos have disappeared but, be assured, they involved me moving couches and attacking a lone earwig with a steel toed boot of awesome husband's). 

earwigs kept popping up this year.  first i found one in the house and awesome husband killed it.  then i found one in the closet where i keep my diet crack cans, right at fucking eye level so i could have a complete fucking freak out before leaving for work.  awesome husband killed it.  then i came home from work one day and there were, like, nine guarding my door.  and i refused to touch the handle, so i banged on the little glass window next to the door until awesome husband came to open the door so i could watch each of them to ensure they weren't going to attack me en masse. 

in this time, my brother started finding earwigs downstairs in his part of the house, which is ground level - not underground at all.  one in the tub, a couple on the floor.  you know.

then, awesome husband, my brother, and sisterfromanothermister all went to atlantic city to see metallica and other bands in this ridiculous festival thingy called the orion festival.  which was set up and started by metallica and had a bunch of great bands.  but was happening IN A FUCKING FIELD IN ATLANTIC CITY IN JUNE and i'm 32 years old and lazy and NOT fucking standing in a fucking field all day to watch a bunch of damn bands.  i am an old lady.  i need a seat in the shade, preferably with a bar withing walking distance. 

plus, i had to work.  and the mets-yankees series was that weekend, and i wanted to watch it.  so, you know.  i stayed home by myself from friday night to like 1am monday morning.

it started innocently enough.  as i was coming home on friday night, an earwig tried to run in the house when i opened the door.  i fucking stomped that bitch and kicked his carcass out the door.  i was hyperventilating the entire time and needed a stiff diet coke before i could do anything else. 

saturday i was in the shower after hitting the gym.  naturally, i was naked, since most people shower without clothes on.  i hate bugs being anywhere i am naked because it's rude and uncomfortable.  so bugs in the kitchen or living room?  i can usually handle (as long as it's not an earwig).  ANY FUCKING BUG in the bathroom or bedroom?  shit's going down.  i've stripped the entire bed at 2am to ensure there are no other bugs after finding one, and have needed tarzipan to get back to sleep.

so saturday, i'm home alone (well, with three lazy and selectively stupid cats) and in the shower.  i throw my towel over the far end of the shower curtain rod thingy so i don't have to traipse across the bathroom sopping wet to get to my towel.  so i turn off the water and grab my towel, wiping my face down first to get the water out of my eyes.  then i kind of open up the towel in front of me because i'm about to start rubbing my body down and I SEE A GODDAMNEDMOTHERFUCKINGOMGINEEDMAPGAS earwig ON MY TOWEL.

there. was. an. earwig. on. my. towel. which. i. was. about. to. dry. my. naked. body. off. with.

do you understand?  do you understand how fucking :LKEJGOBURiowu this was??? i don't even have words.  i was, at the time, speechless.  i couldn't even shriek properly; my throat went dry.

it was one of my worst nightmares: alone, naked, and with an earwig.

i shook the vile thing off the towel into the tub.  i tried to drown it... didn't work.  panicked, i grabbed my hairspray and started spraying it while trying to flush it down the drain.  nothing.  the water must have been washing away the hairspray.  terrified, i turned off the water.  it started coming at me, pincers raised (or walking in the tub, my memory's a little foggy there).  i sprayed it with the hairspray and it slowed down a bit.  so i kept spraying.  for like 18, 19 seconds straight.  it was still moving.  finally, as the hairspray started to dry, the earwig started to die.  it wouldn't go down the fucking drain, so i got like four paper towels and picked it up out of the tub to throw it away. 

stephgas: 2 earwigs: 1.

my brother and sisterfromanothermister came home (along with awesome husband) very late sunday night/early monday morning.  i was up watching 'to catch a predator' and messaging with a friend who i had also got sucked into the show (have a seat.).  my brother and sisterfromanothermister went downstairs and were back up in about 7 minutes.  sisterfromanothermister informed me that the place was lousy with earwigs and she was going home.  my brother told me that he had killed over 20 in like four minutes and that they were everywhere.

my skin started to crawl.  awesome husband and i vowed to go to home depot to get killing tools the next day.

we bought something pet-safe for inside and a 'kill everything that moves' model for outside.  as well as a pet-safe spot spray for killing random earwigs.  we sprayed upstairs, we sprayed downstairs.  we figured we would be fine.

we were wrong.

although we haven't found any more earwigs upstairs and even found a dead one at our front door (HA YOU MOTHER FUCKER), my brother has continued finding them in large numbers downstairs.  in the bathroom.  in the living room.  in the laundry room.  in his dirty laundry.  in his clean laundry.  in his bedroom.  EVERYFUCKINGWHERE.

we haven't sprayed the 'kill everything that moves' spray outside because of time/weather, but it's stopped raining and i'm planning on doing it today.  hopefully that will help.  because my brother woke us around 1 am and said he felt like he was in an episode of 'infested' on animal planet (if you haven't seen this, it's horrifying.  and filled with bugs.  and if you're like me and don't like bugs, i'd recommend avoiding it).  he said he didn't want to stay downstairs. 

i don't blame him.  not one bit. 


in other news, i'm looking for a big girl job.  i've been circulating my resume and looking for a job with benefits and that pays actual money.  not that i don't love piercing - i do.  i really enjoy it.  but there are no benefits.  and awesome husband wants to go back to school which will mean either leaving his current job or cutting his hours enough that he loses benefits.  and i need medical benefits so i can keep taking my 'normal pills'.  otherwise i get all suicidy and obsessive thoughtsy and stay-in-bed-crying-all-day-and-stop-showeringy.

i'm sure i'll blog more about that soon.  but really, the earwigs are the biggest thing right now.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

well, at least i posted *something*

my last 40 minutes at the shop today, and i'm going to write a bit of a post. 

thing have been going... well, going.  things have picked up at the shop a bit for me.  today alone i did hip piercings, a nipple piercing, and a nostril piercing.  which is a pretty fucking good day as far as piercing is concerned. 

i had a call back on one of my many resumes submitted.  a phone interview.  which i guess might lead to an in-person interview.  who knows how long this process could take lol.  and i put in an application at a place i used to work before i got married.  it's a great company to work for and it would be neat to go back.

and i'm still personal training with my personal trainer.  we did lower body today and ZOMG OW.  i had to do squat thingies and calf raises and these backward-lunge-into-a-kick thing and my obliques and my glutes and holy fuck, he made me lean against a wall and squat and hold it for 30 seconds and it FUCKING HURTTT.  but i know it's good because i burned over 500 calories during my 50 minute workout.

of course, i'm eating back all of my workout calories today because i'm fucking hunnnnnnnngrrrryyyyyyyyy.

tomorrow i have a facial and a massage lined up, as well as my 'phone interview'.  and i may weed the garden a bit if it stops fucking raining.  we'll see about that.  we'll see.

on a final note, my hair is no longer mostly pink.  i'm dark brown again.  awesome husband was a bit taken aback, i've been pink for almost 5 years.  pictures soon, i promish.  but until then, here's a reminder of what my hair *used* to look like...

Thursday, June 7, 2012

looks like the winds are changing

i had to take some time off 'dieting' because i sprained my lower back.  it was pretty shitty.  i spent four days in a little nest on my couch, eating muscle relaxers and napping.  it still bothers me in the morning, but i snack on a muscle relaxer and three advil and i'm good for the day.

i went back to the gym yesterday and told my personal trainer (who needs his own nickname, damn it) that my doctor told me to tell him about my back and to take it easy on me.  he joked that nothing was going to keep me from working out! lol he's a pisser, i really like him.  he pushes me A LOT and i feel like i have to prove myself to him.  which doesn't really make sense, but it motivates me.  so i guess it's a good thing.

anyway, he beat the hell out of my quadriceps so i took today off from the gym too.  and i have another personal training session tomorrow morning. 8:30 am.  i like getting it out of the way early.  i still haven't lost more than 5 pounds in the 6 weeks i've been on this lifestyle change, but i did lose weight once i started with the personal trainer.  i also have my heart rate monitor so i know how many calories i'm really burning.  those estimator things online are really not that close.  if you're seriously counting calories and planning on eating back any of your exercise calories, i really recommend a heart rate monitor.

i didn't eat too poorly while i was recuperating and not going to the gym, and i gained about two-thirds of a pound.  so i'm okay with that.  awesome husband started tracking his calories too because he's trying to put on weight (not sure if i mentioned that.  or mentioned how annoying it is).  he's getting very close to his goal weight. 

while i was going through my finances, getting ready to pay the rent last week, i realized i hadn't made any money last month.  i work 40 hours a week and i had made just over $500 with tips in a month.  that's fucking unsustainable.  i started freaking out and talked to awesome husband about it.  and as we talked, i realized something. 

i have the opportunity to help support him. 

all these years, when i've been too crazy to work or too angry to work or too injured to work, he's made the money and supported me.  awesome husband wants to go back to school.  working full time and going to school full time is hard, yo.  i know it and i'm lucky because i go to online only school.  he'd probably be doing all traditional schooling.  and it would be cool, if he had the opportunity, for him to work a little less than full time so he had more time for schoolwork.  and it would be cool if i could pick up the slack money wise.

we all knew piercing wasn't going to be something i did for the rest of my life.  i was hoping it was something i could do part-time while i finished school.  but even doing it full-time isn't really getting me any extra bucks at this point.  not enough to warrant NOT looking for another job.

so i'm back looking for a 'traditional' job.  i'm putting off dying my hair pink again because i might need to go back to natural colors.  and i'm hoping that prospective employers look past my tattooed forearm and hire me anyway.  i mean, most of the jobs i'm looking at are desk jobs where i don't talk to the public, so i think i'll be okay.  and hopefully i can keep piercing nights and/or weekends, at least until i go back to school in the fall.

but i'm strangely excited about looking for a job.  i applied for one with planned parenthood, and one with a local not-for-profit that helps families struggling with chemical dependencies.  hi, that's what i want to be when i grow up.  both are basically entry level (the local not-for-profit was looking for someone with some medical billing experience, but i applied anyway because it's the industry i want to be in.  i hope they still consider me) and would pay 'okay'.  i won't be raking in any dough, per se.  i may be raking in crumbs. 

but i'll be raking in something.  and hopefully that will give awesome husband the opportunity to focus on school.  we'll see what happens.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012


i hadn't lost like any weight.  so i signed up with a personal trainer a couple of weeks ago and am hitting the gym hard.  i work out with the trainer for 30 minutes two times a week.  then i replicate each of those workouts on another day of the week, and i have one 'rest' day of 45-60 minutes of cardio.  and i end up working out another day sometimes.  so it's 5-6 days a week at the gym, an hour a day.

mind you, on top of this i'm 'dieting'.  and drinking a fuckton of water.  66-128 ounces every damn day.  66 ounces is what i drink on my off/rest days.  workout days i drink between 99-128 ounces.  i was using an app from livestrong and had it set to lose 2 pounds a week, which is 1000 calorie deficit.  and it was telling me i was burning like a gazillion calories working out, and i was eating at least half of those calories back.  but i wasn't really burning that many calories, so i was eating extra calories.

enter me buying a heart rate monitor.  so that way i was able to accurately track how many calories i was burning each workout.  i even wore it for 24 hours straight on an off day so i could determine how many calories i burned a day while sleeping, eating, and breathing.  basal metabolic rate.

and then i decided to use a new app.  the livestrong one is neat (awesome husband uses it for his body building and he's gained like 4 pounds since he started using it [can you imagine needing to GAIN weight? if only]) but the community had a huge mix of people.  including body builders and anorexics.  and it's not that i have an issue with people trying to gain weight, but reading the stuff the anorexics were going through and writing about was emotionally taxing to me. 

so i started using myfitnesspal. which i really like.  they have a facebook-like timeline thingy that you can interact with your 'friends'.  so i can friend request people who have similar stuff to mine - like a lot of weight to lose, or who just started, or who weigh in on the same days as me, whatever.  and we can cheer each other on and shit like that.  and this time, i set it to lose 1 pound a week to see if it changed anything.

and it has.  between eating more calories, using my heart rate monitor, and having almost two weeks of personal training under my belt, i've lost 2.5 pounds.  which brings my overall total to just about 4.4 pounds.

paltry, really.  less than 2% of my overall body weight.  but it's almost 2% more than last month... so i guess that's good.

in other news, tattooing continues unabated.  i'm at the point where i barely want to post photos of my tattoos because some of them are half finished and whatnot.  plus, my half sleeve is almost half done so i kind of want to wait until it's done.  you can always find me on instagram - stephgas - where i generally post photos of shit like that. 

busy times, peeps, busy times.  i just wish i had more time to tell you all about what's happening in my life.  because OBVIOUSLY that's why you're here ;)  until then, take a look at this:

my baby jakes <3

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

hmmm... hello.

hello.  hi there.  how have you been?

me?  okay, i guess.  eating 1400 calories a day, plus half of my exercise calories back.  and not losing ANY FUCKING WEIGHT.

i've been busting my hump in the gym, either on the treadmill or the bicycle, and weight training, six days a week.  and i haven't lost ANY FUCKING INCHES.

so basically, i'm eating so carefully and working out and doing all the things i'm supposed to do, and NOTHING IS HAPPENING.

okay, i lost 2.4 pounds.  in almost THREE WEEKS.  that's ridiculous.  i mean, seriously, i should have lost more than that in water weight alone. 

oh, and speaking of water.  FIFTY SOMETHING OUNCES A DAY?!  i fucking hate water.  it's horrible.  i hate drinking it.  and yet, here i am, drinking between 50-60 ounces a day, every day.  and then i can switch to my diet crack coke. 

i mean, at least i'm eating better.  right? 

i'm trying to get in touch with a registered dietician that my doctor recommended.  that way i can be sure i'm doing what i'm supposed to be doing.  because some things i see say to eat my 1400 calories and work out all i want - but then if i burn 1000 calories, i've only really 'eaten' 400... so won't my body go into starvation mode?  i mean, 1400 calories is already a deficit, right?

i think so.  most things i can find online say that my basal metabolic rate should be between 1900-2300 calories a day.  that's how many calories i need to, like, live.  like, breathing and brain function and shit like that.  so 1400 calories a day is already a deficit. 

sooooo... i should already be losing weight.  right?


anyway.  so i've not been blogging because i've been busy not making money as a body piercer and struggling over choosing where to go to school.

other than that.  times are good. 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

i don't have excuses

i really don't. i just suck and am busy. sorry for the lack of posting.

but i've started on yet *another* lifestyle change.  i downloaded this app from and it's really useful. and it's got a neat little community feature built into the app that is full of ridiculous people who boost each other up.

so it wants me to eat 1400 calories a day.  which is not a lot but, you know.  i weight a lot. 

have i ever disclosed my weight here before?  it's a touchy subject.  i know i'm fat a big girl.  but i never really want to talk about *how* big i am. 

275 pounds.  and that's not my highest weight.  it's just what i am now.

and i wake up in the morning and my hips hurt.  i thought it was how i was sleeping, so i changed that.  maybe i need to stretch or work out.  so i did that.  my hips still hurt.

and i realized it was probably because i'm fat a big girl.

i always rationalized it away... excused it.

  • i stopped using drugs, i can enjoy food.
  • i stopped drinking sugary soda and switched to diet, i can enjoy food.
  • i quit smoking, i can enjoy food.
299 pounds was the first time i really dieted.  i freaked out - i couldn't weigh 300 pounds.  i did slim fast and lost 53 pounds in about 7 months.  and lost ONE clothing size.

how the fuck is that possible?  i went from like a 24/22 to 22/20.  fuck.


i gained 18 back when i quit smoking.  and gained a bit more when my mom died and decided to stop cooking and drink all the time.  and i've sort of tried since then.  joined a gym and worked out a bit.  watched what i eat.

but apparently that just doesn't work for me.  i need to track every damn thing that i put in my mouth or i won't lose weight.  so here we are again. 

tomorrow morning is my first weigh in.  i'm nervous as hell because if i didn't lose anything, i'll be sadpanda.  i've eaten under 1500 calories every day for a week except for saturday because i had a party and i still ate A LOT less than i used to eat at parties like that.

i'm also using supplements.  CLA, thermogenic pills, l-carnitine supplements (i call it l-carnosaur.  obvs).  i take a multivitamin and a biotin pill for healthy skin, hair, and nails.  i use replacement shakes to supplement my calorie intake and fill my stomach the fuck up.  so, we'll see.  we'll see.

i don't have an end game - i just want to lose weight.  although i do have my 15 year high school reunion in six months and a cruise just after that.  so i wouldn't mind being a bit thinner then :)

aside from eating better and exercising, i also have one more challenge: to not buy new clothes until i'm down at least a full size.  we'll see how that goes.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

what's in a name?

something said on my last blog post made me consider explaining why my blog is named the way it is.  the actual name of my blog is 'it's never too late to save a hopeless case' and the URL is 'justanotherwastedday(dot)whatever'.

both are references to one of my fave bands, less than jake.  one of my favorite songs is 'history of a boring town' from the album hello rockview.  the end of like the first verse is 'she said it's so funny, how life runs out so fast.  it's just another wasted day'.  i was in a strange place when i started this blog.  it was supposed to be fun and funny, an accounting of my life in all its crazy glory.  because i am crazy.  and i was figuring that blogging might give me an outlet, a way to not feel as crazy.  back then i was suffering from obsessive thoughts among other things, along with just always being depressed.

most days felt like wasted days.  wake up, do what i have to do to survive, awesome husband forces me to bathe, eat, sleep.  repeat.  over and over and fucking over again.

yes, there were 'better' days.  trips to disney.  food at epcot.  trips to new york to see family.  hanging with my besties, getting drunk and naked more often than i should admit.  but i wasn't accomplishing anything except another day on the planet.

and the title of the blog: it's never too late to save a hopeless case.  a line from the song 'hopeless case' by less than jake from the album in with the out crowd.  this song is me.  it feels like it was written for me.  i am all of those things, and awesome husband loves me anyway.  here are the lyrics (i don't know what i have to put here to avoid copyright infringement or whatever, but i don't own them and i don't pretend to and OMFGPLEASEDON'TSUEMELESSTHANJAKE)...

i have this feeling inside that i wouldn't like me, if i met me.
seems like a losing fight, if you could see it through my eyes, then you'd believe me.
the truth is that i'm overrated, i can't think straight, i'm formulaic.
the truth is that it's sad to say it, but you can't help me.

you, you don't see me that way, you hear the words that i say,
you just tell me my heart's in the right place,
it's the world that's confused,
and it's never too late to save a hopeless case.

i've always known a ghost like me can disappear in a moment,
i'm my own worst casualty.  anything i touch can be broken.
the truth is that i'm self-destructive, i'm insecure, i'm out of focus.
the truth is that i've had enough, but you still help me.

you, you don't see me that way, you hear the words that i say,
you just tell me my heart's in the right place,
it's the world that's confused,
and it's never too late to save a hopeless case.

you're giving me perspective, it's better than mine.
and i'll still be defective, and you're wasting your time.

and then it repeats a bridge and the chorus because, hello, that's what songs do.  but that song is me.  and awesome husband has always been like that - supportive, loving, willing to hold my hand and tell me it's okay.  he's never stopped trying to help me, never given up on me.  and i am still defective, and sometimes i think he's wasting his time - but he never thinks he is.

i'm at a much different place now, i think.  i'm still crazy as all get out, but i'm more stable.  i'm working outside of the home for the first time in four years - and i like it.  i'm in school.  i'm accomplishing 'things'.  it's not just another wasted day - none of my days are wasted now.  and if they are, it's intentionally because i feel like doing NOTHING.

but i still feel like a hopeless case much of the time.  and i hope that awesome husband always agrees that it's never too late to save a hopeless case.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


i waited so long to get to the position i am in with my work at home thingy.  i was thrilled to be asked to rejoin the client i had left a year prior.  but things change.

and not always for the better.

now i'm frustrated and unfulfilled at the job.  the extra work-for-free hours are annoying the hell out of me.  and it's eating into my life.  ultimately, i'm going to grown up school (quite probably in the fall).  i won't be able to go to brick and mortar college full time, work 20 paid/5-7 unpaid hours a week at home, and then whatever i end up doing at the shop.  i have work, work, and school.  and one thing has to go.

when i said 'i'll just quit school after i get my associates' awesome husband looked like he wanted to punch me.  so school isn't going (and i'm glad about it).

one job has to go.

working at home is pretty neat.  i work at home.  i love the people i work with.  i love helping people.  i'm good at my job... just not good enough.  it's one of those jobs where we're constantly told to do better and, often times, our progress is glossed over.  it's always 'yes, you did better - but we can keep improving'.  and i get that - there's always room for improvement, no one is perfect.  but it would be nice to have a week go by where we could just be awesome and not have a 'but' in there.

and it *used* to be flexible.  yes, there are a handful of meetings we need to attend every week - most of which i'm able to attend.  but it's not like i just do my time and leave.  they constantly need someone to step up for one thing or another.  if i'm online and something needs to be done, no one considers whether i'm online for work or not - they just ask me to do stuff.  it was crazy busy one night earlier this week and an 'all hands on deck' call went out.  i can't do stuff like that.  i was at my other job when that call went out.  when i worked with another client, it was up to me - i picked my hours, i showed up, i did my time.  if i wanted to take a monday off, i took a monday off.  not now.

working at the shop is really cool.  i love the people i work with and i like meeting new people.  as much as i still hate most people, i'm great with them (customer service runs in my blood).  i have a good bedside manner, so i'm told.  i like sticking needles into people.  i'm terrified of surface piercings and am excited to learn how to do them properly.  it's not as flexible because i have to be there when the shop's open and the other piercer isn't there, but i get two full days off a week.  even though i work both weekend days, if i needed a saturday night off, i ask and someone covers for me.

the money is comparable.  but work at home job is less hours.  work at home job is 20 hours a week - but then an additional 5-7 UNPAID.  which just pisses me off like you wouldn't believe.  piercing is like 35ish hours a week so it's at least 8 hours more a week for the same amount of money but i have fun (and get some homework done while i'm there.  so, you know.  multitasking).

awesome husband's first instinct was to quit piercing.  but i enjoy it so much.  my office is next to my bedroom.  i'm writing this in my bed, and my work computer is sitting on a desk that is literally on the other side of the wall my head is against.  and i don't want to get out of bed to walk into that office and do that job.  but i want to go piercing.

i like doing things i excel at.  and i just don't seem to be excelling at working at home.

and the strangest thing has happened while i'm trying to hash all of this out.  i realized that i'm alive.

i mean, obvs i've been 'alive' this entire time.  but i've been working from home for four years now.  we only had one car.  i never went anywhere alone.

we have a second car now.  i leave the house when i want to.  i get a pedi or go to the spa.  i can go foodshopping by myself.  and fuck, if i want a damn latte i can go to sbux on my own and get one.  it's like i'm a real, productive member of society again.

and i hate saying that - productive member of society.  it makes everyone else who doesn't work outside of the home sound like an asshole.  but when i was really sick, in the dregs of my depression, i wanted to be normal.  and i don't mean the really low lows where you just CANNOT function.  i mean those 300+ days a year where you're just fucking depressed and feeling worthless and shit like that.  the days when you'd give anything to be able to get dressed, leave the house, and do normal-person things like data entry jobs or food shopping or whatever.

i longed for that.  i wanted to be able to leave the house without worrying that people were staring at me.  i wanted to go outside and not think that someone was watching me.  i wanted to have that self-worth and feel good about myself.

and don't get me wrong - working from home was a huge boost for me, financially and emotionally.  i was able to contribute to my household and do something - very well.  i was NOT worthless.

i sent my direct 'superior' an email explaining all of this.  here's some of it...

Since my mother's death just over a year ago, I've worked on living.  I want to have fun and excel at whatever I choose to do.  I have had fun working with Client and would love to be able to work with Arise and Client in a capacity that I excel at.  However, I've also worked on balancing my life since my mother died.  Flexibility is incredibly important to me and I'm lucky that I've enjoyed that in the past with Arise.  But between school and the demands of my position with Client, I don't have that flexibility any longer.
 i know piercing means working saturdays and sundays.  i know it means missing some family stuff and it means not always being around.  but it means having fun and excelling at something.  it means being out there and LIVING my life.

it's terrifying striking out on other things.  and it's sad to me that my business venture may be coming to an end now.  but it's exciting too.  awesome husband and i have always made things work in the past.  there's no reason to believe we can't make it work going forward.

terrifying and exciting.  correct me if i'm wrong, but that sounds like living.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

nsfw or anytime you don't want your eye makeup to run

i wish i could still think of witty, cute, or meaningful titles for my blog.

but i can't.

anyway, i know i'm still a bad blogger.  my only excuse is lack of time.  between my work at home gig and piercing, i'm working 55-60 hours a week.  and i'm still in school full time.

granted, it's online school.  but it's still a lot of work.  and last week i had two finals due.

i got my jellyfish filled in last week.  i think it looks pretty fucking sweet.  i know nicki wants to see it.

eee it's a jellyfish!
 that's when it was new and fresh.  now it's scaly and oozy.  so, you know.  that photo is better.

last week was also my birthday.  it was the same as any other day, except awesome husband came home from work early and we went to benihana.  and ate A LOT.


already full of hibachi deliciousness and sushi.  and ONE mai tai.  it was my birthday.
now the week before THAT (keep up now, we're talking march 7th and 8th) we had a bit of a thing happen here.

my oldest cat, taylor handsome aka papacat, always slept on the foot of our bed.  that wednesday morning he stretched and yowled and jumped down like normal to go get breakfast with awesome husband, just like every morning.

i slept lateish because it was going to be a busy afternoon/evening at work-at-home gig and my brother stopped in on his way to work to say goodbye to me and papacat.  papacat yowled and snuggled like he always did.

a little later that morning, i heard him jump off the bed - nothing strange.  all of the cats make a thud when they jump off the bed.  it has nothing to do with their size (i swear that jake is not fat) and more with the way the house is built.  i was in the kitchen so i peeked down the hallway to say hi as he came walking towards me.

what i saw was not good.  and is not easily described.  he was listing and stumbling.  a few steps and he's take a tumble.  he'd get back up and do it again.  i ran down the hallway to pick him up and he just looked at me.  no yowling or mewing or anything.

i took him back to the bedroom and put him on the bed.  taylor kind of hunched over and, after a minute, tried to take a few steps.  and tumbled headfirst.  i settled him back down and grabbed the phone to call the vet.  i tried to explain what was happening but i couldn't.  they told me to bring him down in about an hour.  i took my macbook pro into the bedroom and sat with him while we waited.  he just kind of looked at me still.  no sound.  i checked all his limbs, thinking maybe he hurt himself jumping.

he had done that once before - tweaked his hip.  you should have heard the noises he made when we manipulated it.  that hip injury earned taylor weeks of anti inflammatory medication and painkillers.  but this time, when i manipulated any of his legs, joints, feet - he just looked at me.  no sound.

i really started freaking out.

he wanted to jump off the bed and do something, so i put him on the floor.  taylor walked in a couple of circles and tumbled again.  i put him right back on the bed and snuggled him.  when it was time to go to the vet, i put him in the carrier with no fight.  and taylor was ALWAYS a fighter when it came to those damn crates.  but no fight this time.

the vet checked all his limbs.  there was blood flowing to his feet because they were still warm and stuff, but he just didn't care if we poked at him.  he still hadn't meowed this entire time.  she checked his belly and back - everything seemed fine.  we decided to do some blood work to see if his kidneys had finally given up.  taylor made a couple of half assed yowls while he was back there, but they made me sadder because they weren't as hearty and loud and blood curdling as his usual yowls.  as i waited in the exam room with taylor, we just cuddled.

papacat and i resting in the vet's exam room.  just waiting.

as you can see, he was just lying on me.  taylor was very limp at this point.  when i would pick him up under his arms, he'd still stretch like always, but then he'd settle back down like this.

the vet came back in - his kidneys were actually functioning BETTER than the last time we'd done blood work in september.  there was nothing wrong with him that the blood work was showing.  the vet said she wanted to try giving him an anti inflammatory (just in case), an antibiotic in case he was fighting something off, and some fluids.  so he got a little mouthy about the injections, just a short 'mrow' to let us know he didn't love it, and we gave him some fluids.  i had her show me how to, just in case it helped and we would have to give them at home.  i put papacat and his saddlebags into the carrier and went home.

within hours, there was a noticeable difference - he was even less interested in anything around him.  he didn't want to pick his head up - i'd hold it up for him and he'd just let it drop back to his pillow.  taylor kept trying to get up and walk - i'd left him on the bed.  so i picked him up to see where he needed to go.  the answer is the litter box but we didn't quite make it.  i was so worried i didn't have time to get grossed out.  i cuddled him in a towel, put him back on the bed, cleaned up, and called the vet.  she said if i couldn't handle it, we could hospitalize him for the night, but it might take more than a couple of hours to see any positive change if anything positive was going to happen.  she suggested a more confining bed.

so i pulled out the bed purchased for jake that all the motherfucking cats hated, but was like a fuzzy three sided box.  i bundled taylor up in his towel and snuggled him in the box bed.  he settled right down.  he'd never slept in a bed in his life.  he always hated them.

i took good care of him.  he wouldn't eat.  he licked a bit of milk off my fingers.  he slept in that box bed next to my bed that night.  i woke up every couple of hours to check on him.

the next morning, things were no better.  i called the vet to make an appointment that night and had bed cuddles with him one more time.

sleepytimes papacat and me with no makeup on.

that's how i held him most of the day.  i put him in his bed on the floor while i took a shower and when i had to take pee breaks, but while i was working at home on the computer - i cuddled him.  i got the blanket my mom made that he usually slept on and swaddled him in that.  i made it like a sling almost and kept him with me the entire day.

awesome husband came home a bit early so he could shower and stuff in time to take us to the vet.  at 5:45, i snuggled taylor up and brought him to the car in his blanket.  i refused to put him in the crate for his last car ride.

and it was peaceful.  he was so sleepy and out of it already, he barely noticed when the vet gave him a mild sedative so the IV wouldn't be a problem.  i held taylor in his blanket until he was gone.  i whispered to him that he'd be happy and healthy soon.  i asked taylor to say hi to mom for me when he found her - because i know they'll be together again.

as soon as he passed, awesome husband stopped crying.  it took me a few more minutes, but we stayed with him until i composed myself and we walked out of the vet's office with an empty blanket.

rip papacat, taylor handsome.  9/7/1995-3/8/2012