Monday, June 22, 2015

Storm Front Averted

Things have been pretty good for the most part over the last week, except that I have been worried a great deal about my daughter. I had not heard from her in over a week, more like two weeks, as of yesterday. The numbers I had for her kept going to voicemail, so I was more than a little worried. The worry had just grown as the days went by. So yesterday, I finally decided to make calls I was putting off. I started calling hospitals and I even called the morgue. Thank god she wasn't there at all. But I also made the decision that if I couldn't reach her or that I didn't miraculously hear from her by Monday, as much as I didn't want to, I would call the police and the sheriff to report her missing. I just didn't want to get them involved, which would get CPS involved and just be a whole other probably, but I was willing to finally do that. I had thought about maybe trying to call some of her friends, but I thought she wasn't talking to most of them anymore and I wasn't sure who she was talking to. Then Nicole asked me if I had any numbers of her friends, which I had looked through my list, though  I guess I only scanned it and didn't think I did, but then I remembered a conversation I'd had with her when she was going to go to her Ex-FiancĂ©'s house to get her things and I was worried about her going alone. She had listed off a bunch of people going with her and I remember hearing the name of her bestie that I hadn't even remembered. So I looked through my contacts and sure enough, found her number. I called, hoping it wasn't disconnected. Well, the girl didn't answer, but I left a voicemail and told her that I really needed to reach Cassi if she was in contact with her. That if I didn't hear from her that I was going to have to call the police on Monday because I wouldn't have a choice at that point. Also, if she could call me back if she hadn't heard from Cassi. 

Well, today I got a call from my daughter and she was like, "I heard you wanted to talk to me." And asked me why I didn't call her on this number when she'd told me to save it. Ugh... me and my memory. She told me for my birthday she was going to buy me a bunch of sticky notes! LOL! I was just thrilled to hear from her! We ended up talking with each other for 1 hour and 15 minutes! God, I really, really needed that! It boosted my mood so much! But I did tell her about her brother, who is seriously struggling and she began worrying about him too. Despite what happened, they still love each other very much and I am thankful for that. What sucks, and she pointed this out to me, is that both of my kids are basically homeless. At least her boy's parents are letting her crash with them for now, so she has a roof over her head and food to eat. I need to call welfare this week and see about her Medi-Cal and see if there is any way I can get food stamps for her, but I doubt it, because she doesn't live with me. I'm not even sure about the Medi-Cal, but I have to find out.

But then there was the issue of my son, Jordan. I have been terribly worried about him for the last several days. His time is almost up at the shelter. He didn't know where he was going to go. He was actually so upset, he was depressed and contemplating ending his life. After what I had just gone through with Jerry, I made him promise me that if it came down to him really wanting to do it that he would go to the ER first! I explained what had transpired with his nephew and told him I just couldn't go through that again. That I loved him and would rather see him in the hospital because something bad happened. Plus, if they couldn't admit him, they would try to get him into a crisis house, where they would do their best to help him. Still, it was like, he wanted to be a security guard. Turns out that things weren't as simple as they seemed. The money I gave him wasn't enough. That upset me because I wanted that to be enough and be able to start his new life. Because of that, he tried applications online and heard back from no one. He's starting to realize that life without a high school diploma isn't so easy and I think he's finally ready to start thinking about getting a GED. Either way, he needs to get a job, somehow. So he was stressing out about being kicked out of the shelter. He could talk to someone on Tuesday about getting an extension, but the chances are not good. He has also been trying to get enough money to pay his phone bill on Monday, which I'm glad about. It means he's still thinking about the future and I told him that a phone was a big priority because we needed to keep in touch and he couldn't really do anything without a phone. Then on Thursday or Friday, he has to go to an appointment at Welfare to renew his food stamps. I think I'm going to talk to him about maybe trying for General Relief too, until something comes up. But my worry is just at an all-time high with him. I posted something on Facebook about being depressed and Nicole my best-friend sister asked me what was wrong. I told her, but rather than keeping up the messages via Facebook, she called me and we talked. She's willing to let Jordan crash on the floor. Plus, her place is right near the Department of Rehabilitation, which is where Jordan really needs to go and I was just telling him about it yesterday. Also that he has to get set up with a psychiatrist and that way, not only will he get help, if he needs it, but that he'll be able to get a disabled bus pass again. He needs it! Plus, Nicole was talking about coming up to visit me with him, because he could take her up! I am happy about that. I still have to call him and tell him, which I am sure he'll be thrilled about! I am just relieved because he'll have a place to go and a place to get help. Maybe this is truly the break he needs! I so hope so!

Anyway, I need to start dinner shortly. I'm making BLTs for the house. I'm going to bake the bacon though, instead of frying it. Less mess and more even cooking. Plus, the bacon won't curl. And if my cooking partner doesn't want to cook, or doesn't feel up to it, I think I can actually handle this all by myself. I mean, literally, it's sandwiches, soup and I believe salad. Come one! I can do this in my sleep. If he wants, he could set the table, though I can probably do that too! LOL! It's good to have an easy dinner. At first, I was kind of intimidated because I was thinking of frying the bacon, then I remembered about baking. I haven't baked it before, but I am more than willing to do it. I think it'll come out so much better! I found two ways to bake it. Well, basically the same thing, just the times are different, so I'll go with the lower time and see how that works out, then adjust as I need to. But I'm following my instincts because every time I don't something goes wrong. So it's time I throw some of their directions out the window - or what's the norm, out the window - and do what I think is right. Things will be much better, I think!
Well, that's it for now. The Storm moved off and sun shines brightly! Life, for the moment, is good!

Sunday, June 21, 2015

Class 5 Hurricane... Blew Itself Out

Life was going along all right, really. I mean, my sleep was kind of hit or miss. That's been the norm for me for awhile now. I was getting a couple of hours here and four hours there. Still, functioning fine. Until Saturday. Saturday night things changed... a realization made... But it started simple enough, as all storms start... clear skies... maybe hints of clouds... but this hurricane started fast and hit fast. A nightmare became reality.
I'm not sure just how much to get into, only because it so heavily involves someone else, but it a story worth telling in more ways than one, I feel. Not for the tragedy, but for the revelation and the joy in the end. As crazy as things got and how tragic they might have been, good came out of it, and ultimately that's the silver lining. Each difficulty, even extreme ones, can teach us something... something about ourselves, if we let it.
All right, I will start at the beginning. My nephew that I have mentioned many times, who I love as family, has PTSD like I do. He does have difficulties with anger as well, but has grown so much since he's been here. He has truly made exceptional progress, which only happens if you truly have a desire to change, which he has. But having the PTSD, when you get triggered, it is hard to get beyond the trigger. It almost takes you over. Well, this evening, I had gone in to take my night medication. Usually I'm the last one, but that night, I wasn't. Jerry was last. But on nights when Ed, the Peer Support Specialist is here, I will sit in the office and talk with him. We talk for hours! It's just how it goes. I love to talk to him! We have a lot of things in common.

Anyway, Jerry comes in to take his medication and I can already tell that he's irritated. Okay... he felt rushed off the computer. I get that way too, especially when I am doing something, and the impression he had been given was that he wouldn't be able to get back on the computer. But it was the weekend and I found out later that he would have been let back on. Wording is so important! I can't stress that enough. It can make the biggest difference between making someone understand you or want to listen to you, versus getting ticked off and possibly yelling and screaming at you because of it, leaving your original point mute. First thing...

So he is in taking his medication and the irritation is definitely coming out in his voice, but that's really all I heard. Apparently, Ed thought he heard Jerry escalating. I did not. He also said that he was talking rudely to the care coordinator there that night, which I didn't here. He also said that Jerry had slammed the med cabinet doors, which he had not done. I was sitting right there at the door to the med room. In fact, I should have been the one to hear any rude comments and so on. Maybe I am not as worried about an escalation of Jerry's voice, because I can distinguish intent, but apparently, enough staff get freaked out by ANY indication that he might erupt in rage Ed felt it necessary, and apparently, this is something that was put in place, that he had to go in there. But as soon as he got up I could see things unfolding. I KNEW it was going to trigger my nephew and make things much, much worse and it did. He got verbally upset and angry. He did well in the fact that he got up and left the room. Unfortunately, he wasn't as good at controlling his response to his anger. Don't get me wrong, he has NOT taken it out on people. But he went to his bedroom door, slammed it and punched it a few times yelling. Okay, that probably freaked out several of the residents. I can see why. But I also know that he had seriously been triggered. Ed got up to talk to him, which I also knew was a huge mistake and I had the urge to stop him and tell him I would talk to Jerry. I might have been able to calm him down. As it turned out, he would have been unable to let me go alone, and he might have gotten in trouble had I gone in to talk with Jerry. Frankly, I told him later that had I done it, he wouldn't have been able to stop me, and I wish I had.

When Ed went to talk with him, I couldn't hear what was said, but I heard Jerry yelling. When Ed came back, he was putting in an emergency call to the police. This also triggered my nephew. Finally, I get off my ass and go to talk with him only to find out he's outside. I know something is really bad. I hear him talking about killing himself. In my mind, I am trying to think how busy the street might be. Usually our street is pretty quiet and I'm worried that he's gone to the main street. So I'm outside and I see him on our usually quiet street. For some reason, this night, of course, there has to be all kinds of cars! That would be the case, right? And he is yelling and literally trying to throw himself in front of cars. I am stunned and all I can think to do is get out in the street and try to stop him. It took me and a few other people from a near by Crisis House that knew him to get him to stop, or they were waving off the cars. Several didn't even slow down!! It was obvious there was something going on in the street! Those are the kinds of people that need to be smacked upside the head several times with great intensity. Anyway, he ended up on the ground, crying. It broke my heart and I stayed right with him.

Around this time the police arrived. Between all of us, we got him on the curb, but he was still crying. I would say hysterics, but I so associate it with females, so I'm uncomfortable using it in this case. We were all worried and I sat right by him. I was rubbing his back, trying to let him know it was going to be all right. I said that to him over and over. We also had to convince him that the police were not there to arrest him. The police officer had to do the same thing. Eventually the nurse from the Crisis House came out with his PRN (medication you take when you need). At first he wasn't going to take it and I asked if he'd take it for me. He did. That's the only thing I feel that I honestly made a difference with. Within about 15 minutes he started calming down, but I could tell he was in a fog. It wasn't just the medication. I mean, when you're triggered, sometimes, especially when you get triggered the way he did, things become fuzzy. They just do. Unfortunately, they still had to handcuff him, because it's policy, even though he was going to be taken to the hospital. Eventually, we got him to his feet, though it ended up that we had to wait on an ambulance. I asked him if he wanted to sit back down. He didn't. I stayed beside him. I wouldn't leave him. I hugged him. But when we were sitting on the curb together, I had an incredible realization. I didn't just look at him as family. To me he was another son. I had not realized the depth of feelings I'd had for him. I am so used to keeping everyone at arms length that I hadn't realized, so realizing that was something I hadn't expected, but also made me realize I still have the capacity to love greatly because there is truly no greater love than a parent with a child (when that parent cares, of course). I would have gone to the hospital with him had they let me, though I would have gotten in trouble with the facility, but to hell with them, if I could have gone. However, one of the other staff who was out there and kind of felt the same way, told him she should be there as soon as her shift was over. Since this happened after 10:00pm anyway and she got off at midnight... I can't even remember when this whole ordeal ended. I was pretty traumatized myself.

When I went back inside I was probably still in a bit of shock, hurting and a bit angry. I went to my room, but on the way, I told my other nephew what had happened. As I was trying to process this Ed came and asked me if I wanted to talk because I looked pretty upset. I just shook my head. I didn't want to talk. I didn't. So instead, he finally tells me that he had specific questions and would I be willing to answer them. So I went and did and I was definitely visibly upset. I was actually trying not to cry and failing and I have always said that if I'm crying I'm in crisis. And I was in a kind of crisis. I had just seen my son try to kill himself.

That night, I didn't sleep. I couldn't sleep. I kept turning in my head what I should have done. That I should have stopped Ed from going into the medicine room. That I should have stopped him from going after Jerry and let me do it... I had all this guilt of what I should have done. So the first thing I did when it hit about 6:00am, give or take, was take a shower. Then after I got dressed, made my bed, I decided I would just start my chore early since it was kitchen follow-up and that meant wiping down the counters and stuff. Picking up stuff off the floor - since I couldn't sweep and mop because of my back. And just wiping down the microwave, taking out trash if it's needed... replacing cereal, which we were pretty much out so I didn't do that. But I literally went to town on the kitchen. I didn't stop at the counters. I started in on the upper cabinets, inside and out, the window sill... I mean, I just had to stay busy. Plus, I didn't want to stop and crash. Not that I would have because I was so upset. After at least an hour of that - which is was probably more like and hour and a half or more, I had to stop. My arm was hurting and I just didn't want to get onto the floor to do the lower cabinets. God knows, I might have taken to rearranging the stuff in the cabinets! But I did finally stop. When I went to get my medication, Jessie, my care coordinator asked me how I was and I told her that I wasn't really doing well and she asked me why and I went into the whole story. She told me that she had gotten an email about it, but it didn't say much. I told her how I felt like I hadn't done what I should have done. That I could have stopped things from happening because I could see it all unfold as soon as Ed got up to go into the med room... But she told me I was being too hard on myself. That I had been there for Jerry and had done more than most people would have. The thing is, I would have done that either way, so I didn't see things that way. I was still in tears and trying to fight it. For me, it was like, what was the point of seeing something unfold if you don't do anything about it. Though I have to say that my logical mind did step in a bit and rationalized that it was possible I might not have been able to stop Ed from going in there. That I might not have been allowed to go after Jerry when he got upset and slammed and punched his door. Still, my emotions overrode that. She did finally tell me I should call Jerry. I hadn't because I assumed that he was admitted and that they had taken his phone away from him. But she told me he did have his phone and I should give him a call, even though she probably shouldn't have told me.

I immediately went to my room and called. Unfortunately, he didn't answer and I was finally on the phone with Nicole since she had seen my posts and knew I was very, very upset. It was during that conversation when I saw a plaid shirt through the crack through the back end of my door. It looked like Jerry's shirt, but I didn't believe it. Then I heard him say "Auntie." I was like, "I gotta go!" I didn't even hang up. I immediately went to the door and screw the rules, I hugged him. The first words out of his mouth were, "I'm sorry I made you cry." I couldn't believe it. I didn't care about that! He was there! I told him that the only thing at mattered was that he was there and that he was okay. I just held him and hold him. Finally I let him go and asked him if he wanted to talk in the Serenity Garden. We went and did. We talked for a bit, but we were both pretty tired. Eventually, he had to go inside to take some medication and I waited for him. When he came back out, we were just like... I'm so tired! Even he was like, "I want to talk but I want to sleep!" I laughed and told him I would make him a deal - that if he went to sleep, that I would go to sleep! LOL! So that's what we did. I crashed hard. I slept until dinner. I took my medication and saw that I had been assigned an after dinner chore and one I wasn't interested in doing. I was so exhausted that I just decided I would rather go to bed than eat and do the chore. So that's what I did. The care coordinator there that night tried to talk me into doing my chore and said that if I'd had a job I would still have to go to work. I replied that I always did my work and I would call in for a sick day. LOL! She didn't have much to say after that except that I wasn't going to do it? I basically was like, nope! So she let me sleep until it was time for me to take my medication. I took it and went back to sleep. I kind of needed the sleep too, but I woke up with a headache. That sometimes happens when I sleep too much.

The following morning Jessie was there and as I was getting my meds, she asked me how I was. I told her I was much better then basically said that she knew Jerry was coming back. She confirmed she did, but that she couldn't tell me. :-) That was fine by me. The important thing was that he was back. I wasn't sure if he was going to make up with Ed though, but they talked and sure enough, things are back to normal. Jerry is his happy-go-lucky self again. It was so good to see him smile! And I still don't give a crap about the rules. If I think he needs a hug, I'm giving him one! That boy has not been hugged enough or loved enough in his life!

So the Hurricane from nowhere blew itself out and the skies brightened! Life became good again!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Warmth of the Sun

The day after my niece's death was just as bad as the day of. There was this horrible, lingering depression and though my logical mind told me it wasn't going to last forever, the emotions were telling me the exact opposite, which is exactly what depression wants you to believe. That darkness wants to make you think it's going to last forever when it won't. I did make it past that day too and the next. But then yesterday the sun came out! Though I only slept about two hours, I woke up and I felt wonderful! I suddenly had energy and I smiled. The darkness had left! I can't say why or how it was able to happen, but it happened. It's not to say I still don't want to cry when I think of my beautiful niece because even now I feel tears wanting to mist my eyes. But that overwhelming darkness has abated and in its place, the dawn has come.

I woke up yesterday morning after two hours of sleep and felt so good. I got up right before it was time for Community meeting so I had enough time to throw on clothes, though I forgot it was Friday and threw on a blue shirt. I  wanted to make my bed and was just about to do it when Community Meeting was called. I sat through that, went on the walk, came back, saw what my new chore was - which is kitchen follow-up. Basically I keep the kitchen counters clean and replace cereal. I'm also supposed to sweep and mop, but I can't do that because of my back, so I always need to find someone to do that for me. Friday another of the residents here was kind enough to do it. That way I got credit. Otherwise I would get an after dinner chore. Though I am starting to think that if I can't find other people willing to help me I'll just say screw it and take the after dinner chore because  I can always request an easy one - like clear, clean and wipe the table. It's the easiest job, in my opinion. Other people might say trash or cleaning the over, but for me it's that one.

I did struggle a little making it to morning group, which I really, really, really didn't want to go to. It was smoking cessation. I'm not a smoker... It's aggravating to have to sit though a group that does not pertain to you. But I did and it was remotely interesting, but mostly because of different off topic conversations that started going on and the group leader kept having to bring us back to topic. LOL! After that, I had time. I finally did some writing with my friend over aim. We are working on a story dealing with humans, elves, blood elves, a Dark Knight, royalty... and drama! Lots of drama! It's distracting! I was also playing on Facebook. I can never do just one thing at a time like that. I was doing something else as well, but for the most part it was those two things. I was getting tired, but I kept going. Dinner was okay. I had to cook dinner Friday night - cheese enchiladas. I was supposed to make Spanish rice too. Since my cooking partner wasn't there, another resident offered to help. To be honest, I figured the resident that was supposed to have helped me wasn't going to be much help anyway. But I couldn't do the rice right. It came out like crap. Literally, I ended up opening a couple of cans of corn to compensate and after dinner, I threw the rice out. There was a lot of it too, but it wasn't worth keeping. I did make a good salad though, and the corn, set the majority of the table and helped assemble the enchiladas. I have to say that part was fun! He and I were doing dances around each other trying to take turns filling up the tortillas after we dipped them in sauce and then getting them to the baking dishes. Those came out awesome! I ate so much. And I wanted to eat more enchiladas! That's the sad thing!

After dinner I worked more on Facebook and had thought about writing on my James Bond fantasy story, but I just felt too drained. Last night was also socialization night. I don't think you can count watching a movie as socializing, but I guess the idea is that all the residents are together. I, of course, was the one to bring out movies. I make sure all of them were PG-13. We ended up picking "Alex Cross" based very loosely on the James Patterson book "Cross." I mean, it was a good movie, but you could never say it was like the book. LOL! But that's okay. Very few people stayed through the whole thing, but that's how it usually goes.

Jerry had missed dinner because he'd been out and about, but eventually came back and I asked him if he would come to 7 Eleven with me. I just wanted to get a drink. I ended up with Gatorade. I just didn't want a carbonated soda, nor did I want tea. Plus, I figured it wouldn't be that bad to have. I wasn't drinking enough water and I was sure my electrolytes were off. And I know that Gatorade is basically water, salt and sugar. That's it... well, and flavoring. LOL! But it's what I wanted. When we got back, we hung out together a bit and then it got to be time for medication. I figured I'd be up just a little bit later than that, but the next thing I know it's 6:00am! I decided some sleep was better than no sleep, but I did sleep. I fell asleep almost as soon as my head hit the pillow I think. I woke up around 10:00am. I had to get up for medication or I might have slept until passed noon! I have to say I was exhausted though. But I got up, got dressed, did the majority of my chore and when I told Jessica - the care coordinator there - we made a switch. She had to take care of the bathroom in Cove 1 and so I did that for her, while she swept and mopped for me! It worked out great! I did also have lunch, which I had neglected to do the day before. I ended up getting a bagel, slicing it in half, putting on salami and then cheese, nuking it and eating! I also I was going to have yogurt, but that was definitely a case of my eyes being bigger than my stomach. I did, however, have coffee! Then I was on Facebook and on aol writing. Dinner was good. I probably could have done a better job cooking this - breakfast casserole. LOL! But that's okay. Then after that, I was off in my room again, but I actually decided to write on my James Bond fantasy. Jerry, however, had asked me if he could use my laptop to play a game with Manny, so I told me I would after I got a little written. I did end up stopping because I am at this one part where a tarot card reading is being done. I picked the cards myself - I know what they mean, though I have to reference my book. The first card was easy - The Tower. Essentially the worst card in the deck as far as I'm concerned. But since I wanted to refresh my mind on the other two I picked, plus I wanted to write an email to my Aussie and get to this, I let Jerry have the laptop. Unfortunately, he found out relatively quickly that all the data on his hotspot had pretty much been used up. He was so bummed out and I was for him too. Apparently some friends of his got the password and that's all it took. He can't replenish it until next month. Which sucks.

Anyway, after this, I will probably do a little more writing, then take meds and stay up until whenever talking with Ed, the Peer Support Specialist here. I just love talking with him! I live for it and he helped me through some of the darkness this week. All I can say is that the last two days have been wonderful. The sun rose and shined brightly! I have hopes it will continue into tomorrow. It's just nice to have the darkness at bay.

Here's to the warmth of the sun!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Darkest Night

I definitely have not been looking forward to today. With as emotional as I have been over my niece this year, I just knew it was not going to be good. I was worried I was creating a self-fulfilling prophesy, but I can tell you for a fact, that's not what today was. There is a difference between manufactured feelings and honest to God ones. These were real and strong and SUCKED! It didn't help that I only slept about an hour and a half last night. So not only am I depressed - overwhelmed with grief and sorrow - but I am exhausted. Yeah, just great! It has been a struggle all day long. Sometimes I have just had to take things minute by minute, because I couldn't handle it any other way.

My niece Nichole Danielle was a beautiful child. She was born when I was around 9 years old because she was a year old around the time I was 10, or just about ready to be 10, I think. I adored her. I loved babies. I was taking care of her from time to time when she was two. I love to spend time with her. I loved to read to her, play with her... by the time she was three, I was watching her on a daily basis. Her parents had divorced. Her father - the first brother I really wish I had NOT had, except for Coley - was a jerk. Not only had he stolen money, committed fraud (such as trying to sell a house that did not belong to him), but he stole money from drug dealers. Was in jail and was a drug dealer, which is how he got himself a lot of money at one point. Oh, and he was a compulsive liar and a shit disturber. You might wonder what a shit disturber is. Well, it's someone that tried to start shit between people because he can. He LOVED to cause strife - especially between family members who already had tenuous relationships with each other! Yeah, he was a swell guy! This is also the guy that said he had taken someone out into the desert and killed them. He also claimed to work for the mafia. Personally, if he had, they would had sent him to sleep with the fishes long ago because he just had too big of a mouth.

Anyway, Coley would tell me about how she was exposed to the drugs. She had seen her father and then a girlfriend of his at one point (this was after I had been taking care of her) in the kitchen of their house naked and doing lines. The girlfriend would also invite her girlfriends over to do the same - naked and all. She also told me she had seen her father selling drugs.

Then we come to her wonderful mother. This woman had two daughters from a previous marriage. Anyway, she got remarried. Well, the man she married was molesting her daughters - including Coley. When they finally told her, you know what she told them? That they were lying and that they were trying to bust up her marriage because they didn't like him. Really?? Really?? If there is even a HINT of that being a possibility, I would take my kids and run or kick that asshole out and call the police! To turn against your own kids just proves that you were never fit to be a parent and to be the custodial parent. That's how I felt about my own daughter's father, who kind of did the exact same thing. He turned on his own daughter after something just like that, except it had been his 22 year old step-son to his 7 year old daughter! I ended up with sole custody of her with no visitation for him. He proved he wasn't fit to be her father. You DO NOT TURN ON YOUR CHILDREN! Especially when it's something like that!

But I took care of her almost every day for three years, give or take. I loved it when she spent the night too. We had so much fun together! And I loved her so much. After awhile, she ceased being my niece and became my daughter. In fact, we would go to the mall and she would call me mom. Now, mind you, this  is when I'm between the ages of 13-16 years old. Grant you, I always looked older than my age. When I was 15, I looked 18. When I was 18 I looked 21 or older. But still, I didn't, at that time, look old enough to have a daughter her age. We got some interesting looks and we loved it and laughed. But during this time too, I was really the only stable female figure in her life, and the whole mom thing really turned out to mean that. Even in my writing, my characters went from having a sister to have a daughter and the daughters would always be modeled after Coley. She WAS my daughter in my heart. I would have given my life for her without a doubt in my soul. Eventually, as I got older, people would say to me, "You have a beautiful daughter." I would smile and say thank you.
Even my friends love her. My best friend (We consider ourselves sisters and have since we were 15 years old) loved her too. In fact, one of my good memories is of this stupid tape her and I were making. I'd had a falling out with a friend and the idea was to make this sort of revenge tape and eventually give it to her. Okay, stupid idea and in the end it turned more into a comedy tape for us. But in the beginning of it, we actually had Coley help us. We gave her a couple of lines to say and it was so cute to hear her little voice. Then we did another section where we recorded ourselves burping. LOL! It served no purpose except to be silly and perhaps annoying to the person who it had originally be intended for. Actually, it would have done more than irritate her. This girl - even NOW! - is prone to make everything into a major drama and she would have blown it up into something else. However, just hearing Coley burp was funny! Eventually, as a joke, Nicole said that we should be called Krazy Krys and the Hot Coles! LOL! To this day it's always going to remind me of that and especially reminded me of my niece - the daughter of my heart - my first child.

As time went on, we saw less and less of each other. She was, however, the Junior Bride's Maid at my wedding. But as she became a teenager and older we just didn't see each other much. She also went down a very dark path. At one point, she had straightened out, got pregnant, got married... she had two kids. Then she fell back into drugs. Eventually, she lost the kids. She ended up in jail - I actually went to see her in jail and she looked great there, surprisingly enough. She, however, had given birth to another child and that child had been put up for adoption. Her other two children, unfortunately, her father took. Yeah, Mr. Wonderful. To this day, I'm curious to know if he managed to do any better with them. To be honest, I don't see how. I think the one that will be the most normal will be the son that was put up for adoption.

Anyway, she got released from jail and ended up into drugs again. She seemed to disappear after that. I didn't hear about her. I was also going through so much of my own stuff - including abuse. But I NEVER stopped loving her. I NEVER stopped looking at her as a daughter. Those feelings just don't go away. Once a child is your child, even if it's just in your heart, that's how it stays. At least that's how it was for me. So when I found out she had died, I was devastated. To be honest, it was so traumatic, I don't remember that year it happened. I could do the math, but I haven't bothered. The year doesn't really matter. What matters is that it happened. I don't even remember being told. That part of my memory is gone or blocked. What I do remember is losing it. I went into my room and screamed, cried and beat the wall. Part of my heart and soul had been ripped out of me at that moment. And all I could see in my head was my little girl. The little girl I had taken care of and loved so much. The little girl that for all intents and purposes had become my daughter for that period of time. She had died of a drug overdose. She had Meth and Methadone in her system. It was YEARS before I could even talk about her without crying. I couldn't think of her without crying. There is NOTHING compared to losing a child and straight out of the blue. I have compared the moment to finding out like getting hit by a freight train. You are standing there one minute, thinking everything's okay and then BAM! Your whole world gets turned upside down, providing you survive. The crazy thing is, one year I stopped feeling like that. I didn't cry talking about her anymore. I had just figured enough time had passed, or I had processed it... then this year... and I am back all the way to the beginning again. So, what probably happened is that I blocked the feelings. I buried them. It's something I'm good at and I wasn't aware I did it. But I think it got triggered this year because of what was happening with my own daughter. It was like I had already lost one daughter and now I was losing another. Grant you, not in the same way, but still a loss.... I found myself crying over Coley again, just like I had in the beginning. I'm unable to talk about her without tearing up and wanting to cry. Sometimes a tear escapes even though my mind and body are trying to hard not to let it; to stop the tears and stop me from crying. You might say, why not let yourself cry? I would if I could. I have tried for years to make it okay for myself to cry. I would NEVER tell someone not to cry. But for me, I feel too vulnerable and growing up, the last thing you wanted to be was vulnerable. So somewhere along the way, my automatic response to wanting to cry is to try to shut it down, and no amount of telling myself how it's okay and it's natural and everyone does it makes it okay or has made a dent in this. So when I do cry, I feel like I am losing control and that I am vulnerable. And the pain is back completely. My nightmare is back. To me, I lost a child that day and there  is NOTHING worse than that. And I NEVER want to go through that again. I'm not sure I could live through it.

SO here I am. I have managed to make it through the majority of the day. I have do what I could to cope. I posted on Facebook in support groups and even on my status. I wrote with a friend. I have dragged myself to groups, I have tried to eat regularly... I have written an email to my Aussie and I also saw my trauma therapist today. We talked about Coley and other things too. But a lot was about Coley and my other daughter. One of the things suggested to me was to write her a letter. I had planned to do that today, but just doing what I've done has really just taken everything out of me. I almost didn't want to write this, but I wanted there to be something on here about her and the day... but especially about how much she meant to me, because I wouldn't hurt this much if she didn't. Love doesn't die.... I know that... I just wish the loss didn't hurt so much. But I did find one thing to be grateful for... That I had been able to have her in my life at all...

Monday, June 8, 2015

The Sunset on the Horizon

This is actually going to be a very short entry since I'm saving the bigger portion of what's going on until tomorrow because tomorrow is going to be the real day that pain and sorrow is going to be overwhelming. You might ask how I know this, but trust me, I know. One can't lose someone they considered their child without unfathomable pain. It doesn't work that way. And tomorrow is the anniversary of that child's death. She wasn't a child at the time of her death. Far from it. But to me, she will always be my daughter - my first child - and there is nothing that can compare to that kind of pain. I still see her in my mind's eye as my little girl and there is nothing that will ever change that. So tonight, the sun is setting and tomorrow the darkness comes... the fighting of tears, the feelings of pain and sorrow... the devastation... Today was merely a taste. Tomorrow begins the nightmare.

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Coming Out of the Storm

This week had been one of severe downs, with some up moments. In fact, life was okay for the most part until Wednesday. Wednesday was a day from hell! I was hit by three different incidents. The first was something that upset me, but nothing I couldn't have gotten over easily and to be honest, that incident I did get over easily enough. But it was the next two that hit me hard. In fact, they basically overlapped and one was such a bad trigger that very bad things went through my head.

Already I wasn't sleeping. In fact, in six days I had had 20 hours of sleep. I was, at this point, falling apart. I was on edge and basically needed sleep badly. But I got up that morning like I was supposed to do. I got dressed, went to community meeting, did my chore - the whole nine yards. But just as I was finishing up my chore, I get a text from my idiot friend asking me why I never get a day pass and come down to see him. Finally, I was blunt with him. I told him that I didn't want to go down there unless I knew his wife was there. This is a guy I have known for 20 years and he had been trying to get back into my pants for the last several months. I tried to be nice and make him think I just wasn't interested in sex. I didn't want to be rude and tell him I just wasn't interested in sex with him. Yes, we did have a relationship for awhile and believe it or not his wife knew. When it comes down to it, she doesn't want him either, but neither is willing to leave the other. For her, it's more about finances and for him it's not just finances, but also because he doesn't know how to be alone. He is also abusive. While living with him, I looked up warning signs for Domestic Violence and he hit every single one. Yeah. But toward the end of the time living with them I ended things with him. I didn't want to have anything to do with him, let alone be intimate with him!!
Anyway, of course, he flips out on me, which proved to me that I had been right. He told me fine, that if I couldn't trust him that our friendship was over. I replied, fine, bye. He kept texting me. I told him that if we weren't friends anymore why was he still texting me? Well, he kept at it and got more and more abusive to the point of calling me a victim, which he said to hurt me. Instead, I told him that's exactly what I was. I then downloaded this app called phone warrior and blocked his abusive ass. I did catch the tail end of one of his texts before it got deleted that was his usual apology that most abusers give. But like most abusers, the "I'm sorry," doesn't mean shit because they'll do it again. In my idiot friend's case, he knows what he's doing is wrong and needs to change, but he won't do it. He won't get the help and he certainly won't put in the work that it would require. Well, his wife is eventually going to leave his ass. She's telling me how close she is. And with the way he is, he's going to end up alone in the end, because no one is going to put up with his ass, unless they really have crappy self-esteem. One thing for sure, I need to cut all abusive people out of my life - except for my kids - my daughter. In fact, my daughter and I are getting along so much better.

Okay, so onto the second thing. Cassi calls me and tells me that she's going to the ER because she's sick. Okay, no problem. They call me, confirm that I want her seen. Anyway, it turns out that she has a bad Urinary Tract Infection. I am also told her Medi-Cal has been cut for some reason! Which means she can't get the medication filled. I am freaking out because she needs this medication. She's freaking out too and all I can think is that if I can't get this for her, then her infection is going to get worse and it could go into her good kidney! I even tried to pay for it over the phone. The pharmacy wouldn't do it. I offered to go into another store in the chain to give them my card and to pay for it that way. That wasn't policy and they couldn't do that either! So I'm calling the hospital back and trying to figure out what I can do to get these meds covered! Well, I am either getting voice mails or people that can't help me. It's around this time my care coordinator asks me if I still wanted to meet with her at 1:00pm. Yeah, I thought it was a good idea. Okay, so she comes and gets me about 20 minutes after and I am still freaking out trying to figure out what to do. All I can think of right now is having my daughter find out how much her medication is going to be and for me to send the money Western Union. I really didn't know what else to do.

So I am venting all of this to my care coordinator and then she hits me with "Let's talk about what you spend your money on every month." Okay, I don't have a problem with that, except that my mind isn't on it. But I'm trying to go through it. Then the Administrator, Rhonda, sits down. I do not like Rhonda. She reminds me of all of my abusers. She has since practically the first day I was here. Well, I was already at my breaking point. I said, "I'm not doing this," I got up and started heading out. My Care Coordinator was like, "Just because you walk away doesn't mean this is going to go away. We need to talk about it." I looked at her and said, "I'll talk to YOU about it." Then I was gone. I went to my room and was just flipping out. I was just about crying, which is definitely when I'm in crisis mode. Terrible things were going through my mind about hurting myself and even taking my own life. I just was done. I was toast. I wanted everything to just stop. I had reached the very limit of what I could take. In fact, that last bit had been a HUGE trigger for me. I felt ambushed! And I do not deal with being ambushed well. It's something my family used to do to me. So it was a bad flashback. That's probably a big part of why I wanted to hurt myself and kill myself. The thought that crossed my mind that if I had a gun I would shoot myself. And here it was, I used to think that after the five years of my restriction was up, I might actually see about getting a gun... now I realize just how bad of an idea what would be. So yeah, I think that's off my list now. If I want to fire one, I'll just have to rent one or something. Owning one is just not a good idea for someone like me. I mean, I have almost always been able to stop myself before acting out, but... there's always that chance when I will act before allowing myself to think it all the way through. I'm not sure I want to place something like that in my hands to be readily available when I feel like that.

Eventually, the assistant program director came and talked with me. She asked if I could meet with her tomorrow and talk with her. I said, yeah, no problem. I didn't have a problem talking with her. I just couldn't and wouldn't talk with Rhonda and I told her why. But she said that she didn't want me to think about it anyone that day and to take it easy. I was glad about that, but I was just so upset. Eventually, I left. I had to get out. I knew things would be even worse if I stayed. I had no idea where I was going to go, but I knew I just had to leave. I hoped the bus going toward the transit center, trying to decide if I was going to get off on any of the stops along the way, because I was hungry. I mean, I knew I shouldn't spend the money, but I was hungry and I had to eat something. Nothing at the house had sounded good and being outside of my room there was the last thing I wanted to do.

I ended up staying all the way to the transit center. From there, I decided I was going to walk around. I had no idea where I was going to go, but I wanted to see what places there were to eat around there. I saw a lot of places, but either, they would give me too much food, or looked like they would be a little too expensive. I ended up at a Dairy Queen. I got chicken strips and they were okay. I also got onion rings and a drink. I didn't mind paying extra for that, but when they wanted to charge me for an extra sweet and sour sauce, I did get kinda pissed off. Okay, it was a whole 35 cents, but I didn't feel like I should have to pay it. Basically, I'm not going back there again, or to any of them anymore. I know, maybe it's an over reaction, but it upset me on an already upsetting day. After that, I walked around more. I went the T-Shirt Mart because I wanted to see if they had a patriotic shirt that I could wear on Monday's for one of my support groups. On Mondays we wear our country's colors to support our country's troops and veterans. Anyway, I had bought a shirt there before, but I didn't realize you can pick decals to be put on the shirts... LOL! You think I would have noticed! Anyway, I found one I liked - a heart with the stars and stripes! So I had him put that on a light gray shirt. It came out really nice and plan to wear it for the first time on Monday. After that, my phone was dying and I was writing with Patty B, so I went to this Hawaiian themes coffee house that I had been to before. Instead of getting coffee I got this herbal tea and it was delicious! I charged my phone for a bit, but not for long. Their wifi sucked, so I couldn't stay. I couldn't risk losing my connection with Patty B. Of course, as I was heading back to the transit, she has to go. But it worked out. I hopped the bus back, I missed dinner, but didn't care and just tried to relax for the rest of the night.

The next day I got a call from the woman I had left two voicemails for about getting my daughter's medication covered! Basically, if I could get my son to get there to sign this paperwork she could get the medication. That her Medi-Cal would be reinstated until the end of July, but I had to see what happened between then and now. I have to get that taken care of next week. My son wasn't thrilled with having to go all the way to the hospital, but he did. I was hoping he could pick up the prescriptions, but the problem was Cassi had them! And without them they couldn't get filled. So I was stressed out that. I called the woman back again and she explained that because Jordan had signed the paperwork anyone 18 years and older could pick up the medication and it didn't have to be that day. I was under the impression it had to be that day and her brother had to do it! So what a relief! That made me feel better! Then I did end up speaking with the assistant director. I knew it was about rent and it wasn't a pleasant conversation, but it wasn't terrible either. We set up an agreement and that was that. However, I was so tired, but seeing as I had to go to the bank, I left. I chose the one Chase bank I knew of that I could get to easily. It was near the Walmart too and I decided I wanted to get a couple of last minute things before I couldn't get anything anymore. Almost all the rest of my money had to go towards rent. I also decided to go to Denny's for dinner too. That was a nice treat. I got Eggs in a Basket and also got ice cream. I'm not sure where I put it all! LOL! But it was a nice treat. Then at Walmart I bought four energy drinks, which is really what I wanted anyway. I also grabbed a new pack of undies, a new bra and a three ring hole punch. I grabbed the cheap one, though I would have preferred to get the better one, but that one was almost $8. I also grabbed one $5 movie - a PG-13 on called "Alex Cross." Of course, I wanted that one! ;-) But I got out of there really cheap! Then I grabbed the bus and headed back. I should mention it's an hour there and an hour back and that's if the buses line up right. Needless to say, I missed dinner again. I didn't give a crap. One of the staff members was already talking with one of my cove3 neighbors - my nephew Manny - about how he's supposed to be there for dinner. That it's an expectation of the program... Whatever. So he comes over to my door and I repeat everything she just said with an "I know." She was like, oh you heard me. I basically told her that I had heard the spiel before and that I had things to do. That it was what it was. However, I was still not doing great. My moods were up and down.

Then yesterday. I got up and went to community meeting, did the walk, did my new chore, took my morning meds and made my bed... I even went and got the money orders for the majority of rent,  but I was exhausted and bad things were going through my mind again. I knew I was going to have to talk to someone on staff. But I felt like I couldn't even get out of bed! So when one of the staff members came in to do my room check I decided I would take the opportunity to talk. It was something I needed to do more of anyway, since I am so bad about reaching out. But I'm trying to do better.  So I am talking with her about the fact that I wasn't doing well, about being triggered earlier in the week, but thought I was doing better and yet these thoughts were running through my head. She talked with me for half an hour and because she talked with me, I started seeing positive things - like the fact that I do help people. Like I helped my nephew Manny. I wouldn't have known it had my other nephew Jerry not said something. But hearing the impact I made had floored me! I told that to Jessica and she pointed out that if I wasn't here what would have happened to him? Who would have helped him? I hadn't thought about it. It really made an impact for me and made me think about who else I might have actually helped without realizing it and how many others I'll be able to help as a Peer Support Specialist and even she told me I'm going to make a great one. That's always so good to hear because I still doubt myself way too much. I also managed to drag myself to group, which I didn't think I would be able to do and it ended up being interesting! Usually, the Dual Diagnosis group is SO BORING! Not only do I not have a Dual Diagnosis, but I know a lot of what they talk about. But this one was about personality traits! Something I have been interested in for a long time! So that had my attention from beginning to end. Then later that afternoon I started feeling cramps. I thought these were practice ones. I sometimes get them about a week before my period. Well... turns out that they weren't practice! LOL! I guess it decided to be early this month! Yay! NOT! But it explained the exhaustion (outside the 20 hours of sleep in six days though that was working itself out), and the moodiness for the day. Surprisingly, shortly after realizing what was going on my moodiness left and I felt more level! God, was that good! I took something for the cramps all was good!    


I slept pretty good last night, which was awesome, though I woke up tired still. Of course, I'm not surprised by that. I got up, got dressed, made my bed and did my chore. I grabbed something to eat and went to my room to play on Facebook and type up my James Bond fantasy story that I started typing up the night before. I also started laundry - which I forgot about! LOL! I also had training at the Humane Society, but I forgot about that too! When I did remember though, I checked the website and found out there was training tomorrow too, so I signed up for that and will NOT forget that. It turned out to be a good thing that I did forget today because Jerry and I were supposed to cook dinner together. It ended up really just being me. I really didn't mind because dinner was so freaking easy! It was pasta bake, veggies and salad. Oh my god! You couldn't get easier! The longest part of it was waiting for the water to boil. It took forever even with a lid on it! But for the green beans, I drained them, put butter on top with some garlic powder. Salad is just too easy. Lettuce, tomato, cheese. Done! The pasta bake was noodles, sauce, cheese, bake. So hard! LOL! So I got that done and set the table. I even had half an hour to spare! And I started about 10 minutes late! I love nights where cooking is that easy! I hate to say it, but unless Jerry is actually helping me, I would rather cook alone. At least if it's something not too complicated.
One of the resident's birthday was today, so he got to pick a cake from the fridge. Apparently there were three to choose from. He chose the chocolate cake. I decided I would try some and hoped that the fridge hadn't gotten to it, or that the chocolate would overpower it. The chocolate overpowered it because I could taste just a hint of fridge in the frosting, but not enough to make me sick. However, I took too big of a piece and ended up sick in another way. Oh, I so wanted to throw up and even tried to make myself, but that didn't work. God knows I am not having chocolate for awhile and even longer for chocolate cake, I think!
So tonight I have written to my Aussie. It's Sunday where he is, so I won't hear from me until tomorrow at the earliest. But work has been crazy for him. Last week was insane apparently. I also have to get back to writing the next part of our fantasy. Hopefully this next coming week. He completely understands why I haven't gotten to it and he would never presume to push the issue. He isn't like that and never has been. God, I love him so much! He is so much more to me that even he probably realizes. And even when I get a brief note from him it's enough to make me smile because I know he thought about me. Yes, I love him. I have loved him since 2008-2009 and that love will never change.

Oh and a bit of amusement. There's this meme that was posted by a friend on Facebook. It is about how much jail time would you get for different things related to sex that you've done. Well, on this friend's post, the highest I saw anyone post was 86. Well, I totaled mine up and well... I had 106! It would have been higher had I still had a certain object! LOL! I laughed and posted that I was either going to die in jail and/or I was going to hell! I shared this with my nephew Jerry and we laughed so hard together! That was so much fun and so funny! That was definitely a highlight of the last few days!

So the storm has official ended. The stars are coming out tonight and the sun will shine tomorrow... the clouds have rolled away leaving fresh air and hope for a clearer day.