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

Sunday, March 11, 2012

stuff and things.

things and stuff. 

things have been going.  i know i've said i'm a bad blogger before but i think i'm illustrating that very well recently.

38 hours a week in the tattoo shop.  20 hours a week working from home.  and untold hours doing schoolwork.  it catches up with you.  plus i got sick three weeks ago.  and was sick for two weeks... three days straight i spent in bed watching cartoons.

things have been going.  not necessarily going well, but going.

i'm sure i'll have stuff to talk about sooner or later.  hopefully sooner than later.  it's building up inside of me because things have been going.  eventually i have to put it all out there for everyone to see so i can get rid of it before it festers inside of me and causes me to breakdown.

full of sunshine here.

so please excuse me, my two jobs, my schoolwork for a degree that's practically meaningless, and my tarzipan while we try to keep moving on.

in the meantime, look at this picture.

i ate this last night. it was fucking delicious.