urbandruid: (Technomage)
So... I seem to keep going for ages and ages between updates lately. It's not that there hasn't been anything to say, more like there's been too much and I hardly know where to start.

I'm writing this on one of the school laptops because I didn't feel like bringing mine today. The college has this cool thing where you can check out a laptop from the library for a few hours, it's really awesome. You can take them anywhere on campus, as long as you have them back by the time they're due. And do not be late, the fine is insane. (No, I've never been late with one, but it's posted on a big sign by the checkout counter.)

Anyway. School has been my main focus since I started back in August. I always try to take a couple easy classes and one more difficult one, and I always end up having more work to do then I think I will. Add that to the fact that it's midterm/paper season, as I call it, and... yeah. I'm lucky if I can catch my breath lately.

But things are better. Last month I had a sinus infection which wasn't properly diagnosed, so by the time they got me antibiotics, the first round didn't work and I had to go for a second, higher grade antibiotic to kick the infection. While still going to class, taking exams, writing papers... you know, life as usual. So that was fun.

Then there was the anniversary of my grandfather's death. If you've been following me on Facebook you know he died last September. We knew it was coming eventually, but he had a bad fall with a head injury, and just never recovered from it. I miss him. I think about him a lot when I'm at school because he used to teach out here, and I just... I wish he could have... Well, hell. I wish he'd never gotten Alzheimer's, that was the start, you know? Fucking horrible disease.

My family is coping mostly okay...now. But it was pretty rough for a while, especially for Mom and Grandma. I still worry about them sometimes, but it's me, I worry about everything and everybody.

You know, sometimes I think I'd just like to totally erase 2013. It pretty much sucked start to finish, with a few exceptions. And I'm not really thinking of any particularly good ones right now. All that stands out in my memory is the bad stuff. There was a lot of bad.

So... Mostly I post on Facebook these days (drop me a comment or an email and I'll shoot you the link) or on Twitter at @technomagecray. Both are friendslocked, but if I know you, I'll add you. Fair warning though, Twitter is where I mostly bitch about things I can't bitch about on Facebook because Mom and my aunt read it now. The joys of family networking. No, really I don't mind, I made the decision to add them, it just changes what I post a little. That and I don't totally trust Facebook's security to be as secure as they say it is. I don't want stuff coming back to haunt me later, so I'm careful about what I post.

I guess I'm still trying to come to grips with everything that happened last year- my cat Samantha dying, my grandfather dying, the break-in and everything that we lost...

Today my Women's Studies prof said something about how there should be support groups for break-ins. Yeah, no shit. I'm not going to try and claim it's as traumatic as some other crimes that people could experience, but it was a major thing for me.

Mostly what I am these days is angry.

Well, no. Not angry.

Furious. Pissed, white-hot rage furious. That people could come into my house- my house! and take things we'd worked and saved for, and just shatter that sense of security that everybody ought to be able to enjoy in their own homes. Sometimes I start to think I've gotten over it, and then something will remind me, or I'll notice something else missing, and it's just like, really? Really, you bastards? You had to steal my favorite tote bag, too? Probably put my (stolen) Mac and Mom's (stolen) Toshiba in there. Fuckers.

The things I really can't get over losing are the sentimental items, and the laptop. Not so much the laptops themselves as what was on them, before I had the sense to back stuff up. I lost years of writing- and I know, you're all tired of hearing about it. Plus I should have backed up more often, which is just- yeah, I know. But seriously?

I'm lucky, that's the thing I have to keep reminding myself of. I was lucky not to be found and hurt, or worse. I get that. I just... Yeah. I hope they catch them someday, but I'll never know if they do or not. I didn't get that good of a look at the one who came to the door, and the neighbor saw them from across the street. Unless we get really lucky... *sigh* I think the police will probably catch them one of these days, because people who kick in doors in broad freaking daylight are just not that smart. But they'll never be able to tie them to our break-in unless they were stupid enough to keep some of our stuff and get caught with it. Makes me wish I'd had my initials engraved on the back of that pentagram necklace they swiped from my room. I figure karma will get their asses in the end, I just wish I could know about it.

...Yeah, this entry is a massive downer, and I apologize. Hopefully I'll have some better news soon.

Let's see. The psychology club is having a get-together tomorrow afternoon so we can all talk about what classes to take next semester, what professors are good, and stuff like that. Should be fun. It's a great group of people and I have a good time every time we get together, even if it's just an informational meeting. I went ice skating with them last year, fell on my ass and got off the ice real fast, but had a great time anyway.

I've been sick for every event they've had this semester, which sucks, but I'm hoping that's over. I am so tired of being sick.

Other news. I'm starting to look into graduate programs, which is scary as hell but necessary at this point in my career. The really scary thing is that I'm going to have to leave home, because the only school around here that offers a doctorate in clinical psych is a for-profit school, and, no. Plus my stalker is going there, and...yeah. Would prefer never to see her again if possible. It's bad enough she's at the college I'm at now, but it's a big place so I don't see her that much. And at this point I think she's more afraid of me than I am of her. That temper of mine was finally good for something- I think I scared the shit out of her the last time I spoke to her, when I told her to stay the hell away from me. At great volume.

Anyway. Grad school. Where I really want to go is UC Berkeley, but we'll see if they let me in. Not only do they have a great program, but the public transportation in the city is awesome, which is pretty much a requirement for anywhere I end up due to the whole no-driving thing. Which I'm coming to accept is going to be a permanent state of affairs for me. They just can't sharpen my usable vision up enough for me to even qualify for a restricted license, plus there's the whole practically blind in one eye thing. It just scares me too much to even think abot trying to drive with one good eye, even if they'd let me. So I've got to go somewhere where the public transit is good enough that I don't need to drive.

I've heard some nightmare stories about grad school, though. One of my professors, who's from a town around here, ended up in Kansas. Kansas. Another prof ended up in Tennessee, but that was Vanderbilt. I think I'd go to Vanderbilt if they let me in. Well, not if I got into Berkeley, too, but I would consider a good school. I kinda feel like they should be fighting over me, to be honest. I'm an awesome student, any program would be lucky to have me, right? ;)

I think I'm going to try and do NaNoWriMo again this year. I've done it once, but it's been a long time and I think I'm ready to give it another go. Even though it's in November, and that's a heavy month for school, what with being the month before finals and all. And even though I'm always busy as hell in November. I have a lot of free time in my days too, especially the ones when I have class- I'm on campus all day, and have very little to do aside from homework and reading in between classes.

Of course, I don't exactly have an idea yet, or not much of one. There's an old novel attempt I might restart, that I've been toying with since high school, but I dunno. It's this YA dystopian thing, and there are, what, a billion of those out there now? I should've written it in the 90's, and sold it when the dystopian craze first hit. (And why does the Firefox spellchecker not know 'dystpoian'? Stupid thing, I am ignoring you.) Anyway. It's about this girl and her friends, who mostly used the internet to communicate. In some versions they went to high school together, but split up to go to different colleges, and in other versions they only knew each other through the net. But they were the only real friends my main character had, so when the Evil Government hits and things to to hell, she tries to find them.

Anybody want a cameo? I promise not to kill you off unless you want me to. ;)

Yeah, the more I think about this, the more I think I'll do it. Why the hell not, right? I need to write something beside fanfic. And I'm still writing a good bit of fanfic (see [personal profile] aurordark) these days. My obsessions go in cycles- this past summer I had seaQuest DSV nostalgia, now I'm all about Gundam Wing. Not sure what'll be next, once the GW bug burns itself out. Maybe I'll get back to the Honor Harrington fic nobody reads, or the Harry Potter stuff. I like fanfic, though. It's fun, it can be frivilious or serious, and it lets me play with a lot of different things- styles of writing, tone, POV... yeah. This should be an [personal profile] aurordark entry. I'll probably go over there and ramble a bit on the subject when I finish this one.

Honestly at this point I'm just killing time till I can go home. I have no homework at the moment, and am not in the mood to do my psych reading. So, you get a tl;dr update. Sorry 'bout that.

I love October. I think in some ways it's my favorite month. It's finally cooling off a little, though I guess that's subjective- it's supposed to be 81 degrees today. But at least it's not 90, and it is cold in the mornings. I finally put my sandals away for the season and dug out my hoodies. Gods I love hoodie season.

I have an exam the day before Halloween, and a psych club meeting on Halloween itself. That should be entertaining. I'm not really sure if I'll do a costume- probably not. If my blazer still fit I'd dust off the Psi Cop outfit I came up with one year and see if anybody recognized it. I actually got somebody who did one year, it was great.

Otherwise I'm going to dye my hair a nice crimson red, dress all in black, and tell people I'm Sydney Bristow. And see if anyone knows who the hell that is.

I like my costumes obscure, apparently.

Okay, I think that's enough rambling for now. If you made it this far, thanks for listening. :)
urbandruid: (Galen)
I'm sorry this is going to be so scattered and all over the place, but that's just the way it is. I haven't written for too long, and there's too much going on.

Practically all semester (since the end of August, anyway) I've been doing exactly what the doctors told me to do, and trying really hard not to do what I was told not to do. I've been taking it easy on the typing and especially on the writing things out longhand. I've tried to moderate my computer use, and people who know me know that that's a lot to ask.

And honestly? At the risk of fucking my hand up even more, I just- I can't do it anymore. I'm done. I'm tired and I'm stressed, it's two in the morning and I'm not sleeping, and I need this. I need to write. Need to do something.

Because, really? Behaving myself isn't helping as much as you might think. Long story short- I smacked the hell out of my right wrist in late August. I figured I'd broken it, hairline fracture or something. As if any of my medical problems could be that normal. Nope. It turned out to have aggravated something I've probably had for a long time, called a ganglion cyst. Which after taking a while to figure out what it was, the nice doc at the school health center stabbed a needle into and drained in October. And we figured, okay, the hand situation will get better now, right? The swelling will go down and the pain will go away, and it'll just- not be such a pain in the ass. Yeah. Didn't happen. Instead the swelling got worse, two fingers and my thumb started to go numb.

And I started to drop stuff. Just- sitting there and watching it go, like someone else had dropped it. Except it was me. Because suddenly I have no control over my own body, or at least my right hand.

So, now I have a new specialist for my collection. Orthopedist #2. Ortho #1 does knees and shoulders, I needed a hand specialist. So. I saw him... like a month ago, I think? Got myself scheduled for an (yet another) MRI and a nerve conduction test, because in addition to Return of the Cyst from Hell, he thinks I have carpal tunnel. Too.

So, Chris, you ask, do you have carpal tunnel? No clue. Because I don't see the doc again until the 4th of December. Yeah. So I have two weeks from this past Tuesday to go. Hanging out with my falling-apart brace from the student health center at school, hoarding the painkillers the doc there gave me for the really bad days.

Wondering if I'm going to need one hand surgery, or two. The number of surgeries I actually want? Zero.

And on top of it, one of the main ways I calm myself down, one of the main ways I keep myself together and just cope with things... is writing. Which I'm supposed to do as little of as possible. Which, yeah, I've been trying. And I just can't do it anymore. I'm typing with my brace on now, and it's slower than I'm used to, and I'm making more mistakes, but at least I'm getting some of this out. Other than talking to my new therapist, or my best friend at school, and my mom, I haven't been able to get a lot of it out. And there's a limit to how much shit I feel like I can dump on my friend L and my mom.

It's been a long semester, my first at real college. And the second or third week this happens, the start of the hand saga, and things have been insane ever since. I got to have someone else take my notes for a month when we thought the hand was broken, but after that- with nobody being able to say for sure what was wrong yet, there was no doctor to sign the Disabled Students form. Nobody to say, let's take a little pressure off this woman, let's make her do a few less things with the hand of doom. I have the form, which I'll make the ortho do something with when I see him in December. But right now I'm stuck doing everything. The only saving grace is that in the one class where I really have to take notes, he uses PowerPoint, and puts the slides online for us to print out. So I only have to write down everything that isn't on the slides.

Still, on the days when the hand is really bad, you can't imagine how much it hurts to write. How much it hurts to fill in the little bubbles on Scrantons for my tests. And thank GOD there are no essay questions.

My psych prof has us doing 'mind maps', these drawings to illustrate the concepts from our reading in our two textbooks. You ever try to draw with (probable) carpal tunnel and a cyst on your wrist? It's a bitch.

The whole thing is a bitch, to be perfectly honest. I'm unbelievably tired of all of it. I am finally, finally on break for Thanksgiving. I've only been looking forward to this for months, because dragging your ass through six units of upper division classes and learning your way around a new college is enough fun without the stress of constant, chronic pain. And the stress of the whole unknown 'what the hell is wrong with me this time and what are they going to have to do to me to fix it?'

But at least I've got some time now, and I'm going to try to do some fun stuff with that time. I've discovered I can't just not write, so I'm going to try typing in moderation (she says, working on this huge journal post, but whatever) and see how that goes. I've gotta do something, you know?
urbandruid: (Beverly / Crushed)
This isn't the update I wanted to make, when I finally got myself together enough to do this. Not that it was ever going to be cheerful, not with everything that's been going on around here.

I started transcribing bits from my (paper) journal last month, because I didn't want to write any of it twice. Because getting that stuff down took so long- I was at it for ages. I'd write a few lines, a paragraph, a page, and then I'd have to walk away from it. Do something else. Think about something else. Be someplace else.

Too much has happened since I typed that stuff up for it to be enough of an update now. Which is too bad, because it's probably going to take me half the afternoon to write this.

In short, very little has gone right, and a lot has gone wrong, since we moved Grandpa into the Alzheimer's unit. Oh so foolishly, we thought he was resigned to being there. Not happy, but resigned. It turns out... Not so much. And he's deteriorated mentally now to the point where he doesn't understand why he has to be there, all he knows is that it's not home, it's not where Grandma is, and it's not where he wants to be.

And for the past... well, pretty much since he was diagnosed (back in '07 or '08, I think) he's done pretty much whatever he wanted, when he wanted. Grandma saved the arguments for the important things, safety issues, stuff like that. So if Grandpa wanted to go for a walk around the grounds of the old folks' home, or leave twenty minutes early for lunch in the dining hall (because he never, ever remembered that they'd backed up the time, and started serving later)... We just went with it.

It'd be hilarious if it wasn't so serious. Actually, sometimes it's hilarious anyway. Grandpa, bless him, does not want to stay in the Alzheimer's unit, and has discovered a new talent. For escaping. Yeah, from the locked Alzheimer's unit. It turns out if you lean on the gate to their enclosed courtyard for long enough, it opens. It also turns out that Grandpa was not only able to do this, but is in good enough physical shape (despite arthritis in his hip) to nearly climb over the bloody fence.

How, you may ask, did we learn about this new skill set? Mom and I were over at Grandma's one day, at her apartment after visiting a bit with Grandpa and leaving him at the unit. We were getting ready to go out and do some shopping, when the door opened. And there he was. Only Grandpa, I swear...

After that, it got a lot less funny. He's entered into a stage of the disease where he's getting violent and combative. I hate writing that, because it's the disease entirely, not Grandpa. He has a temper, or so I'm told, not that I ever saw it, but last month he threw a (small) table through the glass front door of the unit. (No, I don't know why they made the front door glass either. Even the social worker who runs the unit thinks that was stupid in the extreme, and the new Alzheimer's unit they're building won't have one.) He's also shoved staff and other patients who were between him and the front door when it was open.

He's physically healthier and stronger than any other resident in the unit, and it turns out they weren't really- aren't really- set up to handle someone like him. So first the staff tried keeping a closer eye on him, and when that didn't work, they hired an extra aide. Yep, the economy may suck, but someone gets a job out of this mess.

And not that this was in any way good, but it's been all downhill from there. There were so many escapes and incidents of him being violent and aggressive, even with the antipsychotics and antianxiety drugs they had him on, that the overall head of the retirement home basically stepped in and insisted that Grandpa be moved, temporarily, off site to a more heavily locked-down unit until he works through this phase and/or the meds get stabilized.

It's not that none of us understand where she's coming from, but nobody was happy about the move. We were all pretty pissed, actually. Especially since right up until last Monday Grandma was convinced- and pretty well convincing the rest of us- that it wasn't going to come to that, that she'd talk them around or they'd tweak the meds, or... Honestly, I don't know why I believed her. Grandma's not reliable about these sorts of things, she has too much of a tendency to tune out things she can't or doesn't want to deal with. Maybe it's just that I feel like she lied to my face, telling me last Sunday that she was sure it wouldn't happen. Then calling Mom on Monday and saying they'd moved him.

Mom was pretty pissed about that. We were quietly not speaking to Grandma for a couple of days. But it was done, and if we still had way too many questions and not enough answers... Hell, we'll sort it out somehow, you know?

So, today. Grandpa's been at the new place about a week. None of us have seen him for ages, because having us visit really agitated him and they had trouble getting him calmed down. It's been so bad that my aunt and her husband, and my great-aunt and great-uncle were here weekend before last, and I don't think any of them saw him, even though my aunt's in Reno now and the greats are from Massachusetts, and get out here on average of once a year. And, we weren't supposed to visit for two weeks while he settled in at the new place. Which was about when they'd hoped to move him back to the Alzheimer's unit at the retirement place where Grandma lives.

*headdesk*

But, I thought, okay, if he can go home then, back to the unit that's more familiar and the place where Grandma can visit easily, the place I know, and the staff I've met, who like Grandpa and who we all have a relationship with... I thought I could accept not seeing him for a bit longer, if it meant that.

Then today- the first day of my spring break, by the way- the phone rings. It's the hospital, looking for Mom because they need some info on Grandpa. So I called Mom, she called them back... Grandpa fell at the new place, we're not sure on the details yet, and they called for an ambulance to take him to the hospital. Where they were having some trouble getting anything coherent out of him, because while the paramedics were, one assumes, told he had Alzheimer's, they failed to pass that on to the ER staff. Idiots, idiots, idiots!

In related WTF? news, nobody but nobody could get hold of Grandma. Mom tried, the hospital tried, apparently the Alzheimer's unit people tried too. No dice. So Mom dashed out of work to go to the hospital. She tried to send me an email from her phone telling me what'd happened, but we think she lost it when she had to close her phone in a hurry, so as not to get yelled at for using it in the ER. Anyway, I never got it, so I had to get the story from her via illicit cell phone call.

They had to take him for a CT scan, which sounds like an adventure and a half. They sedated him a bit, but Mom still had to stay with him in the CT room, lead apron and all, to keep him kinda sorta calm enough to get the scan done. They tried it twice, so I'm assuming the second one came out okay.

So, Mom spent half the afternoon at ER, trying to keep Grandpa from trying to get out of bed (a really nice security guard had to help her hold him down at one point...) and reminding him that he had to keep the C-collar on his neck. Naturally he hates it and wants it off. Naturally he keeps trying to get out of bed, even though Mom says he was making the most awful pain faces she's seen in a while. He's bruised up all over, too, and Mom told me something in the area of his stomach seemed to be hurting him a lot, which freaks me the hell out. Please Gods let it only be broken ribs.

They hadn't gotten the CT results back last I heard from Mom, but Grandma had finally shown up (still don't know where she was, and am a bit pissed at her, but what else is new?) so Mom went back to work. Grandma's supposed to call as soon as she knows anything.

And all I can think is, the new place has an 8-foot fence. Gods and Goddesses, I hope he didn't try to climb the fucking thing!

Updates as I get them. And an update on the rest of my craptastic life when I'm not so freaked out about all of this.
urbandruid: (River)
I don't know how to say this. I've been trying to find the words for it maybe since Christmas, when I knew something was wrong. Or at least since New Years', when I learned what it was.

Around New Years' we found out that Grandpa can't stay in the apartment at the retirement home with Grandma anymore, that he's slipped too far. We started making plans to move him into the Alzheimer's assisted living unit. Had a meeting there with the social worker who runs it, even my aunt and uncle drove down for it. It's a nice place, a very nice place actually, as these things go. I think Grandpa will be safe there, and maybe, someday, he might be happy there. It's the best we can hope for, and I'm so thankful my grandparents have the money to afford this kind of care.

But a part of me hates everything about this. Sure, I knew it was coming, someday, but actually facing it is something else. Especially when Grandpa doesn't want to go. He's still with it enough to understand on some level that he has to go there, to live, and he doesn't want to go. And it breaks my heart. It's breaking everybody's heart.

And tomorrow his room is finally ready. Grandma moved some stuff down last night, nothing heavy I hope, because hell, that's all we need, for her to throw her back out or something. Tomorrow, Mom and my uncle John, and I, are helping them move furniture and whatnot.

I'm dreading it. I'm dreading the reality of it, of moving my grandfather into a place he has to be, and leaving him there. Dreading leaving him behind a door you need a code to get in and out of. I'm afraid he'll be upset, that he'll forget or not understand why he has to stay there, and why we can't. I'm afraid I will lose it and start crying, and he won't understand why. Or, maybe worse, that he will.

And because I can't have just a family crisis, I have my own. I'm a lot better from the cold from hell I've had, but I'm still coughing. Mom is pretty bad with it still. (Mom also has hypothyroidism and pre-diabetes, which we're also trying to cope with.) And me? I'm severely, deeply depressed. I have a C in Behavioral Stats that I'm struggling and maybe going to fail to keep. (I also have a test today that I kinda sorta partway understand the material for.) I'm also sucking at ballet, and too tired/depressed/whatever to practice like I should.

It looks so simple written out there like that. I am profoundly depressed. But those words encompass my whole world, sometimes. The part where I have to struggle to get out of bed. The part where I wonder why the hell I should bother. The part where I drag myself through classes, and homework, hours spent in the library killing time, when sometimes I'm not doing my homework, even though I should, because I just can't. I open the book, pull out my pencil and paper and calculator, and then I just stare at them. Sometimes I take a stab at some problems, sometimes not.

If I can't do the work, I can't pass this class. I try not to think about that too hard.

I have good days, relatively speaking, days when I almost feel normal. I can tell that today's not going to be one of them.

It's going to rain. Probably a lot. And I have to take the bus home. The bus, which has been an hour late far more often than it's been on time this semester. But I have to go. I have a test to take, then an hour of class to try and get through. And hope I understand.

And tomorrow... Mom's taking me to my ballet class at the college, then- I can't even remember if she's going over to the folks' after she drops me off or not. Probably we're not going till I'm out of class. Dunno, I'll ask her I guess. Anyway, I'm dreading that, and then I feel guilty for dreading it.

Oh, and did I forget to mention we're all worried as hell about Grandma, too? Because she's been forgetful and spacey for a while now. Too. She's always been a bit of a flake, but lately it's gotten really bad. We're all hoping she'll be better once she's not Grandpa's 24/7 caretaker anymore. We're hoping. Because if not...

Mom and I joke about a couple's suite at the Alzheimer's unit. But it may actually not be that funny, except in the black humor sort of way that we have. And that scares the hell out of me, too.

Meanwhile, I get to drag myself to school and take my exam, like everything is normal in my life. I don't even know what that word means anymore, and probably wouldn't recognize normal if it bit me.

So, yeah. All my weeks have been hard lately, one way or another, but this one... This one's gonna be really, really hard.
urbandruid: (Jaina / Invisible Girl)
So, the depression is totally kicking my ass. I don't know why that's so hard to admit, but it is. I feel like I'm doing the best I can, but mostly what I do is a whole lot of nothing. I'm slacking on everything, not because I want to, but because I somehow just can't do anything more than I am right now. Most of my energy is going to dragging myself to school the two days a week I have class, trying to pay attention, acting like I have a hope in hell of passing Stats, which I really don't think that I do. I have about a month of school left, and I just wish it was over. I feel like I really don't care if I pass or not, I just don't want to have to deal with this anymore.

My birthday is Sunday. I'm finding it hard to care.

I'll get through all this. I know that. I'll be better, eventually. It's just hard pulling myself through it, you know? Or trying to pull myself through it. But I figure, as long as I'm not catatonic, as long as I'm physically able to drag my ass out of bed in the morning and do what I have to do, then that's what I'm gonna do.

I'm tired all the time, though. Half the time I can't get to sleep at all, then when I do, I sleep for hours and it doesn't do any good. I think I seriously slept half of last weekend. Still feel like crap.

Still have to go to class tomorrow, and take a test Thursday. *sigh*

And my family- *facepalm* Grandpa's surgery got rescheduled for last Thursday, only Grandma kinda forgot to tell Mom that. She did call her, though, when he was out of surgery. I'm sure you can imagine how she felt about that one. So, Grandpa's home and kinda doing better now, except we have to wait for the results of some biopsies to come back. Mom's heading over to see them after she gets off work tonight, so maybe she'll have some news when she gets back.

It's not that the way things are going surprises me, exactly- I remember how it was with Great-Grandpa, and I know where we're headed, but it's getting hard. Harder, I should say, 'cause it's never been easy. Seeing what the Alzheimer's is doing to Grandpa... Sometimes, almost more often than not lately, I don't know who he is. He's still with it enough to ask me how school is going, which is about all we ever talked about anyway, but- Hell, this is a depressing subject, and it bothers me even when I'm not already depressed.

I don't know if it's just me, as messed up as I've been feeling lately, but I feel like we're waiting for the other shoe to drop. 'Course, I've been feeling that way for years, ever since Grandpa was diagnosed, really. So who the fuck knows? I try not to think about it a lot, which sucks as a coping strategy, but sometimes it's all I've got.

Life in general needs to stop sucking now. Really.
urbandruid: (Galen)
Still alive. I'm mostly posting randomness on Twitter these days, because it's quicker and easier. Mostly I've been too insanely busy to post anything longer. I've had PT two days a week, doctors' appointments, classes, family stuff... During the week I feel like I'm just running, running, running. Then the weekend hits, and I crash.

Last Saturday we went out to run some errunds, post office, library, stuff like that. Came home, watched some TV, went to bed. Slept pretty much all of Sunday. Seriously. I got up twice, had a snack, maybe took some of my pills (I can't even remember) and went back to sleep. Mom figures we were both exhausted, which she was probably right about, but I really hope it doesn't happen again, because I have stuff to do.

And no Stats homework for the weekend, since we (ugh) had an exam today. Which I think I may even have passed. No thanks to my counselor at Disabling Students. I emailed her Monday asking for her signature on a form that allows me to have extra time for taking my exams. She hasn't gotten back to me yet. It's making me grumpy.

I'm not in love with my class or with my teacher, but so far I'm surviving both.

I was really skeptical about physical therapy for my shoulder, but it's helped a LOT. They stared me off kind of light back in December, and now they're working me with weights and resistance. It's usually not tons of fun, though it can be. I love my PT and his assistant, they're both awesome and take my sarcasm and jokes in stride, which is great. I'm slowly getting better, slowly getting my range of motion back. The shoulder's only had one or two spasms this week, which is a lot better.

I'm not overly fond of my orthopedist, but he's of the opinion that I just need to keep up with the PT, and call him if I have problems, get worse, or stop getting better. Which is fine with me. When I started down this road I was convinced I'd torn something and would need surgery. It's good to be wrong, sometimes.

I'm still in some pain, sometimes a lot of pain, but I have painkillers. I even have a refill, which I'm hoping not to need to use, but we'll see how that goes.

I'm trying not to stress out, which some days works better than others. I'm also trying to clean up and clear out stuff in the house in my (haha) spare time. It really is getting there.

My family is... well, it's my family. Been a bit odd since my aunt & uncle moved out of town, because now it really is just Mom and I dealing with the grandparents. The last couple of times she's gone over there I couldn't deal with coming along. I feel sort of bad about this, but it's true. They're... hanging in. Grandpa bounced back from the pacemaker surgery great, though I think his expectations for how much better he'd feel were a little high. I worry about him, but what the hell is there to do?

Grandma's brother and his wife, my great uncle and great aunt, are coming for a weekend- good Gods, it might even be this one, I'll have to check- and that's always highly entertaining. I love them both, they're a riot. He's Grandma's little brother, and the interactions are hysterical to watch. Hopefully some of the aunts and uncles will come down to see them- probably, since the great aunt & uncle live on the East Coast. It'll be cool to see everybody for a while.

And today... This afternoon is a good day, this morning was kind of a so-so one. Behavioral Stats will do that to you. But overall I've been in a better headspace lately. Getting my shoulder back into shape and losing some of the pain really helps there. It still hurts like a son of a bitch sometimes, but it used to constantly hurt that much. So, progress.

Oh, and I didn't kill any freshmen the first week of school, though I was very tempted with a few. Still not ruling out the possibility of smacking a few people upside the head with the cane, though. :)
urbandruid: (Default)
So, I have my first physical therapy appointment today. I'm not looking forward to it, obviously, but it's more than that. I can't shake the feeling that it's not going to work. I'd love to be wrong, but I don't think I am. If it was just tendinitis, I think the anti-inflammatories would be doing more for it than they are. I think we wouldn't still see so much inflamation on the MRI and the x-rays. I think it wouldn't be locking up on me and hurting like HELL in 3D. I think maybe I'd be able to wash my hair or brush it or do other kinds of reaching things without it locking up or the pain getting so bad I have to stop whatever I'm doing.

And I'm kicking myself for not telling the ortho guy my doc sent me to, about the locking up, or the occasional inability to brush or dry my hair. Or the fact that sometimes it's impossible to write, and once I had to do it anyway to answer an essay question on a history test, and every fucking letter was torture.

I'm mentioning it to the PT, that's for sure, but I feel stupid for not telling the doctor. Usually I write stuff down, especially when I'm seeing a new doc, but it was finals week, the day of my history final, and I was just... not at my best, let's put it that way.

I just think, from everything I've read, that that kind of weakness and especially the locking up, is a sign of an injury, not tendinitis. I'm afraid it's gonna make a huge difference in diagnosing what's wrong with it, and I fucked up. I don't see the doctor for 6 weeks or so, though it may be sooner if this really doesn't work.

I have these nightmare visions of my arm swelling up like a party balloon, you know? And, not so incidentally, hurting like hell.

Speaking of which, the shoulder would like its morning dose of painkillers, NOW. I need to jump in the shower anyway, and get ready to go. The hot water usually helps. Except it'll lock up at least once... maybe again when I'm trying to hold up the blow dryer...

If I have to ask Mom to help me dry my freaking hair, I will cry.
urbandruid: (Vader / Sith Happens (niicoly))
Well, today's going to be fun, in the sense of not really.

So my doc thought I just had really bad tendinitis in my right shoulder. Turns out... maybe not. I got one shot back in October, in a place I don't really wanna talk about, which seemed to do wonders for a while there. Then the swelling and the pain started creeping back up... and this is with prescription-strength anti-inflammatory drugs twice a day. So I went back to the doc in early November. Got another shot, which didn't seem to do nearly as much for me as the last one did... and got scheduled for an MRI.

Which I tried to do last week. Only, it turns out? I'm not just slightly claustrophobic, I'm really claustrophobic. So I'm going back today, they're giving me some kind of conscious sedation (I'd prefer unconscious, actually...) and we're gonna try again.

They said I could take my pills in the morning with small sips of water, but what I really need to take my pills (anti-inflammatories included) is food. Which I can't have for six hours before my appointment.

No food, no pills, nothing to drink- and I'm not really all that hungry, but I'm really thirsty. Bringing a bottle of water to have when I get out of there, but it's sure no fun right now.

Oh yeah, and I'm 1.) still scared to death of the MRI machine of doom, and 2.) even more scared that my doc's right, I've torn my rotator cuff, and I might need surgery to fix it.

If I never need another surgery in my LIFE it will be too soon.
urbandruid: (Vader / Sith Happens (niicoly))
Lemmie see here... did yesterday suck as much as I think it did? Um, yeah.

Mom and I went out to do a few things; we figured we'd be back in a couple of hours. Yeah. Right.

As we were pulling into a spot at the post office parking lot, a kid in the car next to us opened her door. Into Mom's driver's side window. Which broke. Well, shattered, really. Also sliced a BIG dent/cut into Mom's door right by the handle, jamming it closed. She had to climb out over the console and go out my door, and we have bucket seats.

Everybody's okay, us and the other people, just very shaken up, but the car wasn't drivable. We thought it would be easiest to have it towed, get a rental, and go on with our day. Hah! Insurance company gave us the rounaround, sent the car to a place that isn't open Saturdays, so that now we think our car is at the tow company's yard.

I called my uncle and had him pick us up. He was going to just take us home, but since he and my aunt have another car, he offered to let us borrow his pickup until we could get a rental.

So the upshot is, we have my uncle's little pickup, Mom's going to call and, er, straighten a few things out tomorrow, by which I mean heads will roll at AAA, and we ain't paying those tow fees, no freaking way.

Yeah. We're better now, but yesterday was not good. Mom was really upset, I wasn't much better. My aunt and uncle were great though- they're packing up their house to move halfway across the state, and my uncle dropped everything to come get us.

We're heading out in a bit to have dinner with them and some of their friends, then going to finish our last errand from yesterday- buying soda at Target.
urbandruid: (Stop Pissing Me Off)
In a word? Argh!

I'm not sleeping much lately. Went to bed around 4:00 or 5:00 this morning, and woke up around 9:30. And that's actually more sleep than I got the night before, or the night before that. It's really too bright in my room to sleep in the mornings, so if I wake up I usually stay awake. That's not new, but I'm going to strangle the 'new' neighbors. They've been here for a while, but I'm starting to think that the place next door has some Curse of Annoyance on it, because everyone who's ever lived there has driven us nuts.

They are getting better, though. The first people who lived there had loud fights and louder make up sex, both with the windows open. *facepalm*

We had various members of that family for a while- some kind of divorce/breakup, I think. Don't miss them- they also had bratty kids they never kept an eye on, and had this habit of slamming the side door to their garage so hard it rattled stuff on my desk (and not so incidentally scaring the CRAP out of me.)

The current renters? Fireworks. Little and not so little crackles and booms, on and off for the past week. I woke up this morning, and it's trash day, so at first I wasn't really annoyed. Then I realized that the garbage trucks don't make crackle/pop/BOOM noises.

The neighbors do. Middle of the day, middle of the night, whenever. And I know, tomorrow's the 4th and everybody always gets a little crazy around here with that this week. But seriously, people? Waking me up?

Just don't steal my fucking lightbulbs like the last morons did.

eta: Oh for fuck's sake! The idiots are fighting. I can hear them over my iPod. *facepalm*
urbandruid: (Laura has no patience for your bullshi)
I'm starting to remember why I don't take naps in the middle of the day. I woke up shaky- maybe because the phone rang and scared the crap out of me (stupid telemarketers) and my head's full of images from weird dreams. I think I was in a better headspace before I took the nap, except that I was exhausted. Staying up till 3:00AM and then waking up around 9 will do that, which is why I went back to bed. Tried staying up, as I was unfortunately pretty awake, but then I started to get tired again, so I thought, screw it, I'm going back to bed.

I don't know, really. I'll be glad to get this over with, but I'm not really in the mood to go to the doc's. Tired, grumpy... I'll probably feel better if I eat something, since I just realized I haven't yet today, but honestly, right now it's jut too freaking much. This had better go smoothly, and they'd better not jerk me around again, I swear. Mood I'm in right now, I'd slap that stupid twit at the front desk across the face. This is not, in fact, a good idea, despite how much it appeals to me.

I just keep telling myself it'll be fine, the doc I'm supposed to see will be there, we'll get somewhere with this... but if that doesn't happen... *sigh* No more Ms. Nice Patient, you know? Because if being nice and polite and "yes, doctor" doesn't get me anyplace, then it's time for "I really am as old as that chart says I am, and I have really seen that many doctors for that many medical conditions. And we're done playing around now."

Assertive!Patient mode is sometimes necessary, that's all. And no slapping stupid fuckwit receptionists, no matter how much they deserve it.
urbandruid: (Nametag (jackshoegazer))
Okay, so here's the semi-condensed version of the story. I may not have mentioned this before, it seeming to be too much to try and explain when I was supposed to be busy getting ready for school, but I've been having these weird reactions to foods for the past... uhm, year or two? And by weird reactions think: "Oh shit, is that anaphylaxis?" We've been pretty sure it's a food allergy, and I kept meaning to bug my doctor about it, but for a while it was only a kind of minor reaction, so I kept putting it off. Then last month I had to go chat about prescription refills, and I thought hey, as long as I'm here, let's have that talk about the allergies.

She said it could be a number of things, and sent me for blood tests. We decided to run the blood tests for respiratory allergies while we were at it. So I went for the blood tests, and they came back... normal. All of them. According to the lab I'm not allergic to grass, pollen, mold, pet dander, or any of the major foods they tested for.

I was willing to give them the benefit of the doubt on the food tests, since I don't think I am allergic to milk, eggs, peanuts, etc. But no allergies? Yeah, right.

So they referred me to an allergist. We have a couple big allergy clinics here in town, though I see them advertised so much I wondered about them a little, you know? But my regular doc's office hasn't steered me wrong yet with a referral, so I figured I'd give it a shot.

My first appointment was last week, and let me tell you how much fun it wasn't. I went in expecting to mostly talk about my food allergies, and the respiratory as a sideline, kind of "as long as I'm here..." But their main food allergy guy wasn't there, and they really wanted me to see him. I'm faceplaming at the idea of two allergists, but you know, whatever. What's one more specialist, really? So I agreed to come back and see the food allergy guy, and we proceeded with the exam. Doc checked my ears, nose, throat, the glands in my neck, tapped on my sinuses, and said, "I think you have a sinus infection."

*facepalm*

I do? ...Yeah, I do. See, here's the thing. I know I've been tired- okay, exhausted- since finals week. I've been tired, feeling really draggy, and haven't felt like doing anything. It's also been hellishly hot, and I always feel a bit like this when it's hot. And it's not that I disgree with the guy, because looking back on the last couple weeks, I really don't. If I think back I can see that yes, I was a little too tired, and yes, my sinuses did hurt more than they usually ought to, and yes, there were the headaches, and, and, and... I'm just kind of flabbergasted that I missed it. I think I would have figured it out eventually, in another couple days maybe, but I still felt kind of stupid. *headdesk*

After we had that little chat, I got to have some more fun with testing. They gave me a peak flow test- here, take a deep breath into this machine, blow it out as long as you can, then take another breath- and apparently the reading sucked. Color me shocked; I've never been really good at stuff like that. So they made sure I was doing it right- I wasn't- and tried again. Still not happy with the results. So I got five minutes on a Nebulizer, breathing in some slightly not so great tasting gas, then got to hang out for ten minutes while it kicked it, then another peak flow test. Better results, but still not great.

Next: Allergy skin tests. I was expecting this, and I was expecting it to suck, but.... wow. Just- wow. I'm trying to think of how to describe it... It wasn't the most uncomfortable medical procedure I've ever been through, but let's remember what I've been though. I think it actually might be the worst thing that wasn't done to my eyes. 90 skin tests, in groups of 5, which breaks down to something like 18 groups of 5 tests. Just little scratches really, from needles with a drop or two of some allergen on them. On my back. All over my back. Maybe if I wasn't so little it wouldn't have taken my whole back, but it did. Some hurt more than others; I remember the one on my lower spine being particularly bad. Some were just uncomfortable. Some started itching or burning right away, some took a while. I think one or two might've been minor itches, but most if not all of them were really bad.

The waiting after the tests was almost worse. There I was, wearing a one size fits nobody paper gown, lying on my stomach trying to both keep my ponytail off my back and keep the gown from gaping in places it shouldn't, for fifteen minutes that felt a hell of a lot longer. Itching like crazy and wishing I could scratch something, knowing that was a bad idea. Finally, someone came to read the test and wipe off the numbers they'd used to label the tests. Hell, at least they didn't draw a grid on my back, like some poor patient I saw on House once.

Shockingly, I am allergic to things. Grass and mold type things. Really? you say. I know, I know, it's very hard to take in. So nice to know those massively expensive blood tests worked, too... Anyway. After a sinus CT to confirm my infection (the whole time I'm seeing dollar signs flying out the window...) I finally got to escape. With a prescription for antibiotics, nose spray for the infection, and a sample of the asthma inhaler I've been using on and off since November. And the promise of more tests when I see the food allergy guy.

Yesterday, I was supposed to see the food allergy guy. He only works two days a week, and I made sure the appointment I made was for one of those days. But guess who wasn't there yesterday? *facepalm* I figured since I was already there, I might as well see whoever else felt like dealing with me. Wasn't real happy, though. The upshot? Enter Allergist #2 (naturally the guy I saw last week wasn't in the office, either.) Allergist #2 checks the peak flow. Doesn't like the peak flow. Cue Nebulizer. More peak flows. Still not happy. Allergist #2 actually comes in and watches me do the peak flow. Couple more times. Lots of frowns and "hmm"s.

Upshot? They think I have asthma. Asthma! He wanted to run the blood test to check for food allergies, but I explained I'd already had it. Naturally my doc's office sent the referral but not the test results, but I told Allergist #2 all the tests were negative. ALL of them. More frowns and a "Hmm." I left with more goodies- another fast-acting inhaler sample, a sample of a daily-use inhaler... and scripts for both.

Oh yeah, and in two weeks I'm supposed to see the food guy. (Allergist #3?) Did make them put down a note to call me if he's not gonna be in, so I can reschedule, but I really hope he's there. If you're only working two days a week, you know, working two days a week would be pretty cool. So in two weeks I fully expect a round of food allergy skin tests... and I hope a diagnosis.

My luck? It's probably "asthma, and btw, here's an Epi pen and a list of stuff you should never eat again." So far everybody has asked me if I carry an Epi pen, and frowned when I said no, so I expect to end up with one of those. *facepalm* I'm really still processing this, and I'm not sure it's totally sunk in yet.
urbandruid: (Nametag (jackshoegazer))
Argh! I really hope this !@#$ing credit card thing isn't going to end up needing its own tag. Today I got a little package in the mail with my 'sample' of some dietary suppliment thingy, Acai Berry or some such nonsense. Enclosed is a packing slip that informs me I have 15 days to cancel this 'subscription' or I'll be chared $83 something- $94 with shipping! It also says there's a 30% 'restocking' fee if I return it.

We'll just see about that!

What creeps me out is that it came addressed to ME, at my house. Why would that be? Wouldn't whoever got ahold of my credit card number want the crap they bought sent to THEM?

On the plus side, good luck to those idiots with 'charging' me with anything else, since the bank closed the account yesterday.

I just feel like I'm losing my mind. I don't need this right now. Not that I ever need it, but...

So upset my hands are shaking. I think I'll go do something else for a while.
urbandruid: (Vader / Sith Happens (niicoly))
Argh! Argh, argh, argh!

I got this automated phone call from the fraud prevention department at my bank, and I figured, probably no big deal, because last time they were just being a little paranoid.

Turns out? Not so paranoid this time. There's a bunch of charges on there, weird stuff I sure as hell didn't do, mostly little but they were adding up. This woman at the bank was reading off charges to me and I'm going, "No, no, OMG WTF? No, no, okay that one's actually mine... that one too. No, no, OMG!" etc, etc. Long story short, they stopped payment on all that crap and closed the account. I'm to destroy my credit card and any of those 'courtesy checks' I happen to have. (Of those I have none, I always shred them when they show up.)

I suppose I'll go feed my now-useless credit card to the shredder in a bit, but right now I'm a little freaked out. I know it's obviously the best thing to do, closing the account, and I should get my new card in 7-10 days, but this is really inconvenient and annoying.

I'm ALWAYS careful of how I use my card online, and have never ever given the number out over the phone, and I use Paypal for all my eBay stuff, so I'm left wondering what online store I bought from lately got hacked. The bank, of course, isn't likely to tell me if they ever figure it out.

I'd meant to post something today, but this was not what I'd had in mind. And I wasn't having the best week before this. *headdesk*
urbandruid: (Galen)
Actually, to be perfectly honest I'm not sure if it's Bill Gates I hate more right now, or those assholes at Gateway who make such shoddy computers in the first place. Because much as I hate Bill Gates, he didn't make the lemon that is my old laptop.

I have a new laptop, a shiny silver MacBook Pro, and I'm pretty sure his name is Galen. In the decade plus since I last owned a Mac, it's become possible for them to talk to each other, share files, and so on and so forth. So I didn't think I'd have much trouble getting my files off of Anna and over to Galen. I forgot that this is Anna, and she doesn't play well with others. Never has, but it's been getting worse lately, which is a good part of the reason I got a new 'puter for Christmas.

The CD drive still doesn't work- Anna doesn't think it exists at this point- so there goes one easy way to get my stuff from point A to point B.

I spent half of this afternoon and part of this evening trying to get some kind of ethernet magic happening between the laptops. No go. My suspicion is that either 1.) Anna's too old and Galen is sitting there going, "Is that a Pentium 4? I don't speak that!" or 2.) Anna is just too screwed up.

Anna doesn't network well. She barely hangs in there with the DSL modem, and needs a notebook card to go wireless. I've actually got one of those, but its software is on, you guessed it, a CD, so...

What I'm looking at (and I'm not looking forward to it at all) is maybe 2 or 3 GB of Word documents, HTML files, and assorted images, plus almost 10GB of music. Oh yeah, and all the email files. Gods only know how much memory we're talking about there. If I'm lucky I can get most of the music transferred to the Mac from the iPod itself. As for the rest...

I can FTP it all to urbandruid.net and download it that way, or I can try to email it to myself. Or, you know, use my tiny 250MB USB drive. And won't that be fun?

It's almost 1AM now, and I'm hoping that all of this will look better after I've had some sleep, but I honestly think it may be a case of same shit, different day.

On the plus side, I really do love my new laptop, and I got both DSL and my email to work on the first try. Something to be said for that, right? Right.
urbandruid: (River)
I've been shaking out the couch cushions since I found out I didn't get the scholarship, trying to find the money to go to London in the spring. The program application was due last Friday, so I got that in, and waited for them to call me in for my interview.

Tuesday was my Spanish final, and while I was waiting for my ride home I checked my messages. Got one from the nice lady at the district office. Unfortunately not about the interview. They didn't have enough people apply to the program, so they had to cancel it.

I'm bummed out, disappointed, and trying not to get depressed. I kept it together through Wednesday, which was my last final, but yesterday it really started to hit me that I'm not going. Nobody from here is going.

In other news, Mom has bronchitis, Sam still hates the new kitten and is making her displeasure felt by hissing and yowling when she passes the room he's in, and leaving little presents for me in the middle of my bathroom (aka crapping on the floor.)

I'm beyond ready for this year to be over. For lack of anything better to do, and badly needing distractions, I'm spending most of my time reading and playing LEGO Star Wars: the Complete Saga, on my Playstation, which I can't recommend enough even if I am stuck on the next to the last level of Revenge of the Sith.

I'd really like to get some writing done sometime, but my brain just isn't in gear right now. I think I strained it a little too much with the finals. And the huge bundle of fun and stress that has been this semester in general.
urbandruid: (Jaina / Invisible Girl)
You guys remember the scholarship I applied for? The big one for studying abroad, that I was going to use to go to London next semester? The scholarship whose app I spent weeks working on and agonizing over? And then months on edge waiting to hear about?

I just got an email from them.

I didn't get it.

I've already had a long day and a long week, I've been fighting a migraine all afternoon, and now this.

We're going to try to scrape together the money somehow, but it's a lot of money and I'm not sure we can do it. I'm not ready to give up, either, yet. But... damn it would've been nice to get the scholarship. That would've paid around 75% of the cost.

I'm not really sure whether to go off and cry now, or start taking stock of stuff I can sell on eBay. The latter would be more productive, but....

Yeah.
urbandruid: (Jaina / Invisible Girl)
I promised an update, didn't I? Yeah, I thought I had. It's taken me a few days to get to it- and I actually have been meaning to do it for a while.

I guess the easiest thing to do is to group the updates by subject, so, in no particular order-

State of the Kidneys: I had blood work. I had a CT scan. I had other tests, and the less said about those, the better. What did my doctor learn from all this, you ask? #1, by the time the doc decided to do the CT, the stones were gone. The only thing he saw on the scan were really good pictures of my poor inflamed bruised-up kidneys. He thinks I had a couple stones and they passed. No, really? #2, as to the blood work and other tests- half the reason he wanted to do these was to get baseline readings. But at least according to his nurse who called me with the results, all of my results are 'normal', nothing jumped out at them, I'm probably 'just one of those people', etc. *headdesk*

State of the School: I still think they should issue hunting licenses for freshmen. We have way too freaking many as usual. It's about the middle of the semester, and my teachers are piling on the work. Especially my Spanish prof, who is really easygoing but who I think my classmates have managed to royally piss off. Our attendance has more weight on our grades than our exams do, and you get extra credit points at the end of the semester if you have perfect attendance. Which is great, except it means everybody comes to class, even the people who don't want to be there. And all they do is talk. In English. When we're supposed to be working in pairs or groups or even when the prof is lecturing, these idiots are chattering away, texting, answering their cell phones... Today he took roll halfway through class, gave us a ten minute break, and told us we could all leave if we wanted to. He says next time he's just going to tell them to leave. Three people left, and you'd be amazed how much quieter it got after they did. Here's hoping they don't come back.

State of the Laptop Hateway: This stupid fucking computer, I swear to Gods... it's been trying to die for a while now, you all remember the keyboard adventures (I still have keys that don't work, or work very rarely) but now it seems to be spreading to other components. A couple weeks ago, Anna here decided she didn't have a CD drive anymore. And has been unable to recognize that the thing's still there, ever since. Then one day last week my mouse refused to work. It came back, but I'm seeing a sign of the times here. Mom was talking about replacing the computer for Christmas anyway; now we're crossing our fingers the thing lasts that long. Also wondering how much fun it's not going to be to try and get all my stuff off of here without a damn CD drive. (I hadn't, of course, updated my backup CDs in a month or so, as of the CD drive crash.)

State of the Big, Time-Consuming Project: Goes a little like this. School's doing a semester in London in the spring. It's not cheap, but it looks fantastic. My geology prof, who I really like, is one of the teachers who's going, and she clued me into a major national scholarship for students who want to study abroad. I had to write an essay, plan a project to promote studying abroad and the scholarship, send transcripts, and fill out a ton of forms, which is what I spent half of September and the first part of October doing. I'll know if I get the scholarship in mid December, and at this point I've just accepted that I'm going to be stressed beyond belief until then. The scholarship is up to $5,000. Even with the financial aid I discovered I qualify for this semester (*thwap* to the guidance counselor for sucking at her job as usual) if I don't get the scholarship, I can't go. And I really, really, really want to go. I think I have a fair shot, because the scholarship people like junior college students, students who've never studied abroad before, and, yes, folks, disabled students. Check, check, and check. It's gonna be great if it all comes together, but in the meantime it's also been this huge mess of stuff and bureaucracy and red tape and nonsense, and it's driving me insane.

State of the Fam: You guys know I love my family. I do. But with everything that's going on lately my bullshit threshold is practically nonexistant, and hanging around my relations isn't exactly stress free. Sometimes we think Grandpa is doing better than Grandma, which, considering, is really freaking scary. They both tripped and fell last week; Grandpa bruised his knee, Grandma gave herself a hell of a black eye with her glasses. They did at least get checked out by the infirmary people at their nursing home, but still, Mom and I were facepalming when we found out about this. (And note that we found out when we met them for dinner one night last week, when Grandma took off her sunglasses.

State of the Parent: Mom gets her own section, because she's saner than the rest of them right now. Of course, it turns out that her foot still hasn't healed from the fall she took months ago, so now she's in physical therapy for the foot. Only the doc who's sending her for the PT just put her on medicated patches, and while she's wearing those they can't do half the treatments at PT that have really been helping. Mom's been getting that kinesio tape like that US women's beach volleyball player wore at the Olympics, and she says it's really been helping. We're pretty sure all the drug patches are doing is masking the pain, and I know there've been a couple days when Mom has pushed herself too far, because it didn't start hurting when it should have. Mom's considering smacking the doc upside the head. If she doesn't, I may do it for her, 'cause I've about had it.

State of the Druid: Actually, between one thing and another I've about had it in general. It's election day, to which I say, "Thank Gods, now you can ALL shut the fuck up." We vote absentee, I sent in my ballot last week, and I really do not care at this point. California has this charming measure on the ballot, Proposition 8- asshole conservatives want to amend the friggin' state constitution to say that 'marriage is only between a man and a woman', blah, blah, blah. Bigots and homophobes r'us, especally around here. They've been demonstrating for the damn thing in major intersections, the mall, and around the Barns and Noble. I gave them the thumbs-down, each individual idiot, as we drove past on Saturday. I swear they were so pissed they were turning purple. One guy waved his giant American flag at me, like the finger of admonishment. To which I say, it was fucking raining, asshole- flag's supposed to be put away. Honestly I felt like I was very restrained- I didn't give them the finger, or roll down the window and scream at them, which is what I really wanted to do.

I really wanted to dare them to take their little hatefest on the road to San Francisco, and see how it played out there. I'll spare you guys the rest of the rant, but those people really made my blood boil.

In better election news, our illustriously moronic mayor, Alan Autry (yes, that Alan Autry, whom you might remember as "Bubba" from In the Heat of the Night...) decided not to run again, so at least we're rid of that embarrasing idiot. Who always seeemed to be under the impression he ran the county and the state, instead of just the city. IIRC, he wanted to pass a city ordinance about illegal immigration. We're in the middle of California, not the Mexican border. He spent most of his time at Starbuck's and the gym, anyway. I may miss having him to kick around, but... I think he'll be like George W. Bush. We can always still make fun of him.

*sigh* Moving on. I'm so stressed I'm hardly sleeping, or at least I don't feel like I am, and I need a vacation. Oh, and if I could just hear a "yes" from the scholarship people...

Oh yeah, I knew I forgot one.
State of the Ants: Because it's only just now starting to cool down, the little fuckers have been making incursions through most of September, and we found a few in the kitchen last week. I foolshly put on some clothes they'd had access to, and ended up with a TON of bites, 10+, which is not good when you're as allergic as I am. It rained a lot over the weekend and yesterday, and I hope they all drowned.

...I think that was everything. *hugs*
urbandruid: (I Can Kill You With My Brain)
Yeah, I'm still alive. Exhausted, but trying to hang in there. If I could sleep more I'd probably be doing better. Saw my new specialist last week, and am going back next week. If I still feel like Queen of the Kidney Stones I get a CT scan. If not, I get bloodwork and stuff to maybe *gasp!* find out why I keep getting these things, the better to try and prevent them.

Just for that, I like this guy. I mean, I love my NP, but everyone I've ever seen before for the kidney stones has been like 'oh well, you passed it, that's that then, carry on.' Which drives me nuts, because I'm still not normal!

I had to give up coffee, tea, and my Pepsi entirely. I drink water, diet Sprite, lemonade, and juice. I have half a glass of Pepsi or Dr. Pepper, sometimes less, and the kidneys start singing that same old song. "Hey, remember us? You shouldn't have done that." *poke, poke* Strangely I seem to be okay with Starbuck's, but that may have something to do with the fact that usually when I was at Starbuck's I was hanging out for a bit, and rather than be bouncing off the walls I'd drink one mocha, and follow it with the biggest pomegranate frappichino they make. Not even sure if they still have those, but I loved them, and so did my kidneys.

And, you know, I'd sure as hell love to know what caused all this, why one day I was as normal as I've ever been, and the next, 'Boom! No more caffeine for you!"

So we'll see where that goes.

I had a lot of pain yesterday, but I'm better today, so at this point I'm chalking it up to sleeping too much and drinking too little over the weekend. (And we all cross our fingers, because I don't want to have to call the doctor and move up my appointment. Bleh.)

I guess I'm doing alright, though. I've only had to cut one class, last Monday's Oceanography lecture. I felt really bad about it, but it just wasn't happening. I went back to bed around 8:00, and slept clear through my noon class time, so that was probably a good move.

Had a Spanish test on Thursday which he hands back today- I think I probably didn't do so well, but the way he weights stuff, I really don't care. Too much else going on anyway.

Anyway, I'm sorry I haven't been around more. It's just too much effort a lot of times to go online and try to keep up. I don't mean to worry people, though, and I'm sorry if I have.

And now, off to another fun day of dragging my ass through 2 hours of Spanish II. Whee... Adios!
urbandruid: (Vader / Sith Happens (niicoly))
Ugh...

Okay, to make a long story short:

1.) Have kidney stones. Plural. Not sure I want to know how many exactly, but it's been pretty miserable.

2.) It's too fucking hot, making the kidney stone thing even worse.

3.) I have an appointment with a specialist on the 10th, which I'm really nervous about.

4.) DSL is down, because apparently the phone company thought this would be a good time to mess with me. Yeah. I thought it was just the modem, but the ISP guys say it's the line, and I'm inclined to believe them.

5.) Mom goes to see a podietrist today for this foot thing she's got. We think we know what it is, and it could be kind of bad.

So, yeah. That's where we are. Somebody hug me?

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