Bipolar – Fears

Ever since my 21-year-old son moved out several months ago I’ve been alone with my pets. Bailey, my heeler, follows me constantly. She sits across from me when I go to the bathroom and looks at me like she wants me to play ball. Actually, she usually gives me the ball when I’m on the toilet. Or she drops it too far away from me so I say, “I can’t reach it, bring it here.” And she does.

I lived in a rural area for the last 20 years and in the same house for the last 10. I know the families in the duplexes next door and am comfortable with them. One of them I know if something happened she’d be there for me. Like when I fell down the stairs and broke my ankle my kids went and got her and she handled it. I miss her. We didn’t generally spend much time together because she’s one of those people you’d like to know better, but the cost would be hours and hours of listening to her talk about everything that comes to her mind and being aware that she believes she’s an expert on everything she talks about. And she talks really loud and smokes so she has to be able to stand by a door when we’re in one of our houses so she can stick her hand out the door.

Now I’m in town and there are houses all around me. I have a giant apple tree in the back yard that screens me from the houses directly behind me and fencing and laurel trees around most of the small back yard. It’s just big enough for Bailey to really run around and have fun.

There are people living on both sides and across the road from me. There are people behind me. There are people up and down the streets in the neighborhood. In short, there are people everywhere. I’m crowded in a way, but I’m also very much still alone.

I’m in town and closer to my kids. They’ve been great helping me move in. I’m looking forward to seeing them more.

I’m in a strange house. I’m so overwhelmed by all the boxes that I’m having trouble unpacking and finding places to put things away. I’m unsure of myself. I’ve lived with AC for the last 10 years and now I don’t have it. I don’t feel comfortable having the windows open all night and we’ve been having really hot weather. Yesterday was the second hottest day of the year so far. It was 85 inside when I went to bed. It really frustrates me.

Since I moved I feel more alone. I think part of it is from the loss of my cat and the circumstances surrounding that.

It’s strange because I’ve had two family members whom have never visited my home drop by already. You would think I’d be happy to be around people and where I can see my family more often. But I’m not. Not yet.

The death of a pet and moving are major life stressors. In addition to that last fall I started back to college and before that my father died 6 months after being diagnosed with cancer. I feel like I’ve had enough.

I’m trying to accept the situation and keep busy. I’ll make sure to keep my appointment with my counselor next week. I’ll start walking around the neighborhood in the next few days, though the unknowns of that scare me. I don’t like the unknown. And there seem to be dogs everywhere.

Speaking of which I have another major event coming up. My daughter is leaving the Air Force and I’m flying to Tampa, FL to drive back her to Washington State with her two cats. I’ve never done anything like that. Besides the incredible challenge of the trip, I’ll have to trust my kids to take care of my animals while I’m gone. I’m not certain how that will work out. Both Kyle and Sydney basically work full-time and they work odd hours that are usually different every day. I worry about Bailey. Sydney and her fiancée Toni are planning on bring their young Pitbull over and sleeping here with both dogs since they both sleep with their people. She sleeps with them and Bailey sleeps with me. That would put two good size dogs and two people in my queen size bed. I can’t see it myself. Their dog is much more aggressive playing than Bailey is. She scares Bailey.

Unknowns…

I might change my major at school as well. If I do need to change my class schedule this fall quarter a little because I’m thinking of changing my major.

I feel alone. People do drop by, which I’ve never had happen before. The mail lady is friendly and says “hi” and gives Bailey a bone. I’m less alone than I was, but I don’t feel that way yet. My emotions are stirred up and a bit chaotic. I’m being careful to take care of myself. Although I have to admit I’m scared to go to the new grocery store I’ll be using. I’m a worrier and that fear comes from that.

Maks, my cat, has started protesting that I won’t let him sleep with us. He climbed up some mattresses leaning against the wall in the third bedroom. When he got to the top the bedroom light was turned on. Then, last night, he got on the peninsula in the kitchen and started knocking things over. So just as I was going to sleep there was a loud crash as he knocked things over. This morning I woke up to things I was putting away (unpacking) all over the floor. This has got to stop.

I got a free Comcast security system installed yesterday. I freaked out about setting it right and not setting off the alarm. Man! What an alarm! That sucker would scare Jesus.

So what to do. Today it’s only supposed to be 76F. Tomorrow it should be about 80 again. I should go for a walk in the morning. I should, shouldn’t I?

It would be great if I could tell Rebecca, my counselor, that I’ve gone for a walk, but I’m not sure I can do that yet. Bailey has really been pulling on her leash a lot. I’ll have to use her prong collar.

Facing my fears… fears of the new, fears of the unknown, and fears of not being able to have the courage to do the things I need to do.

I should take a chill pill and in 20 minutes I should go for a walk. I’m not sure that I will. I’m feeling a little relaxed right now. The evil cat is sitting next to me on the sofa. Bailey is napping in the recliner. I’m snuggled in my favorite corner of the sofa.

I wonder what the difference between sofa and couch is?

I’m going to try my hardest today. At the very least I need to unpack and put away a few boxes.

Here’s to all of us who are afraid of anything. May we find the hidden strength to face some of those fears today. We can do it. I know we can. Let’s start today.

 

Whose Crazy Now?

I want to tell you a true story that is taking place in my life and the lives of those I love right now. I’m changing everyone’s name but my son’s and my own to be polite. If you think you see yourself, congratulations.

As you turn onto our road and begin to slowly pass the mailboxes on the left you may notice two duplexes on the right. We live in the first one on the right. Once upon a time, Misty and her son DJ lived in the first house of the second duplex. That’s how we knew them. We were just neighbors. Over time our sons got to be friends and over the years have remained so. I’ve never cared for Misty, DJ’s mom. She treats her kids poorly and is just mean. When she and her son would wrestle when he was young she would grab onto his balls and hang on. Okay she’s like half his size, but that’s not an okay thing to do to your own son.

Let me paint you a picture of the woman. She had some friend of hers staying with her for a while. They got drunk, as they often did, and Misty threw the other woman out of the house. The other woman came to my house. It was the middle of the night. Why my house? I don’t know. I didn’t know her. She was drunk and begged me to let her send the rest of the night. What was I supposed to do? We live in the middle of nowhere. There was literally no place for her to do. So I let her in to sleep on the sofa.

I had been saving some of those mini bottles of booze for several years. They were sort of decorations. She found them and drank them all. She cried hysterically and carried on about things you carry on about when you’re drunk and talking to someone you don’t know. In the morning she left.

That day I got a phone call from my landlord, who was also Misty’s landlord, asking if I had a new roommate living with me. I’m like excuse me? No I don’t. (The woman had been staying at Misty’s for several weeks.) Misty had called our landlord to get me in trouble for letting her friend in my house.

This is who Misty is.

DJ and his girlfriend Sienna live with his cousin and two other people in a house about 20 minutes from here. After knowing DJ’s cousin, Maryanne, for more than two years Kyle and she noticed each other and started dating.

-skip ahead three months-

DJ and his girlfriend Sienna and Maryanne and Kyle have decided to move out and get a place to rent together. Kyle agreed to stay with me until I move into town. I’m looking for a house now too.

While Kyle and Maryanne are there watching TV the other night Misty pops her head in the room and tells Maryanne that she has 30 days to get out. Then she popped back out. That’s all she said. She still hasn’t explained or spoken about it to anyone.

DJ, having had his mother already beaten him into submission, hasn’t even asked his mother why she’s kicked Maryanne out. What did she do? I’d like to know since my son is moving in with her. What’s up?

Yesterday Maryanne is talking to DJ about moving and planning because they’ve all decided to move out with her instead of waiting another couple of months and he tells her he’s decided he can’t move out because he needs to get his truck fixed so that it will pass emissions, which it apparently will not do now. This is the first Maryanne has heard that she’s on her own. She fell apart.

The next morning before work my son informed me of the situation. Last night he let me now he was going to be moving in with her so she wouldn’t be alone.

Pshit

The plan was for the three of them to move into a house in a few months with Kyle joining them as soon as I move into town. I live in a very large duplex in the woods. Often at night the coyotes scream and freak me out. I’m pretty sure the homeless squatters have moved on from the house behind us. At least, I think they have.

I have to admit that I’ve not lived alone since 1986. I don’t know how I feel about being alone. I have my wonderful dog Bailey (she’s a cattle dog) and our two aging cats to keep me company.

My bipolar is basically in pretty stable right now. In other words I’m doing pretty well. My last child is moving out and I’m looking for a house to move into. Add to that some other family drama and the fact that I’m not going to school this quarter and you have a mix for remission to be reactivated. I have no intention of letting that happen. I’ve fought too hard to get to the point where I am now.

I wrote about something that saved me back at the end of autumn quarter, I think it will continue to be my friend now.

Thank you doctor, for my little chill pill.

Whose crazy now?

Garbage

Kyle and his girlfriend Melanie and both our dogs were out at the park walking and visiting and we talked about Jen (next door neighbor in the duplex) for a few minutes then moved into talking to the more pertinent issue of the garbage dumpster. Kyle and I have an agreement. I fill a box up with trash everyday so I can get ready to move and he takes it to the dumpster when he gets home from work or first thing in the morning. He spent quite a bit of time at work or at Melanie’s house this week so he hasn’t been around to take the trash out.

Now I have to tell you about our dumpster. It lives right in front of our part of the duplex. We’re the very first domicile on our private road. All the houses on our road use this dumpster. I have never seen so few people put so much garbage out at one time. Okay, maybe I’m wrong about that. I’m sure there aren’t too many studies done of watching who throws away what and how much. My spot in the living room is right in the corner where when I look outside I see the yard and the dumpster. Day before yesterday I watched a couple back their very familiar truck up to the dumpster, flip both lids open on the dumpster and start emptying the contents of the bed of their truck. It isn’t even summer yet and still, they’re already throwing away more liquor bottles than the local bar does. On top of that they put a bunch of that black PVC tubing that was loosely wound in. I fumed a bit that Kyle wasn’t home still to take my trash out. I was running out of places to stack garbage in the livingroom.

Then Jen cleaned out her garage and filled up the other side half way at least. I don’t know where she gets stuff to throw away from every spring. Every single spring since we’ve lived here she’s bitched and moaned about how much stuff she has to clean out of her garage. There wasn’t that much, but it did fill the dumpster nearly half full on that side. I watched with dismay as my dumpster quickly filled to the top. The right hand side wasn’t even closing all the way now.

We have some new neighbors, whom I’ve not met, that live in the left hand side of the duplex next to ours. They, brought out a huge roll of carpet and filled up the second side of the dumpster. Now both ….. Wait a minute, someone else has crammed more on top of the already full dumpster. Shit. Now we have to wait for the garbage truck to come on Tuesday. I’ll tell you what, I’m going to have a huge pile ready to fill it up myself this time.

Isn’t it funny how we jockey for position in the dumpster. I know the neighbors do it too. Some Tuesdays as soon as the dump truck comes and empties out the trash … oh you are kidding me. Someone is trying to put more garbage in. He’s over there jamming three more white trash bags on top. Good heavens. What did everyone decide to take out their trash on Sunday this week? It’s a good thing I don’t have any smelly trash to take out.

Well, the dumpster is now much fuller than it was yesterday while I was at the park with the kids. Kyle spent all of his time off of work Friday evening and Saturday at Melanie’s so he wasn’t around to take out the garbage I’d prepared for him Thursday.

Am I making a big deal out of nothing? Probably not. After all, when the crows start ripping it all apart it is my yard it all goes in. And, I have piles of trash all over the house too.

You know what this reminds me of?

I dunno.

I was hoping you did.

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