One Day At A Time

I’m really having a difficult time writing consistently in my blog. The problem is, that I’ve nothing to write about. Well, not unless you count me complaining about this, that, or the other! I don’t want to do that – it drives readers away. Forgive this post, please; it’s just a bit of complaining but it can’t be helped as it’s the way I’m feeling.

Prior to March 15, I could go get my hair cut & colored, take the cats for their immunizations, get my eyes checked, take the car for service or a tire rotation, go to Walmart, the bank, the grocery store, and take Dad for any appointments he may have made. There were countless other things we could do in addition to our weekly outing for lunch. Those times we went out – for whatever reason – gave me experiences and ideas for writing. (They may not have been good ideas, but still…) Now, the only experiences we gain are when we go to the drive thru at the liquor store, bank or pharmacy. Hardly a reason to come home and write!

I feel ‘stuck’ sitting at home. I have nothing to look forward to. Before this pandemic, I looked forward to going to whatever appointments we had lined up or even to Walmart. (Imagine that.) I looked forward to my son, daughter in law, and grandson coming to visit. I looked forward to lunch with my Dad once a week. Now, I’m afraid that will have to wait because Covid-19 cases in my county and surrounding counties are going up. The numbers are still very low compared to most of the country but still a cause for concern.

Being disabled has me at an extreme disadvantage. Had this pandemic happened 10-12 years ago I’d be out hiking, bird watching, gardening, cooking, preserving veggies from my garden, creating soaps and bath products, among other things. I can’t do any of those things now so it’s terribly depressing. I’ve spent the last decade not only trying to get medical assistance, but also trying to reinvent myself. That’s not going quite as well as I had planned and now it’s at a stand-still.

My days now consist of the “same shit – different day” and quite honestly, I’m surprised I even know today is Monday Tuesday? I spend my days updating on social media, reading blogs, placing orders for the week, and doing a few quick chores. I watch a little TV, read a few chapters in a book, crochet, fix quick foods for Dad and myself, and giving each of my cats a good brushing. I sit at the computer waiting for inspiration and/or motivation to write. Nothing comes to me. I turn on some music. That’s no help. I search for writing prompts that strike me as interesting…but either nothing appeals to me or I start writing something, only to save it and walk away disgusted with my writing skills. I can’t even find the motivation to write about my ex for The Ex-Files!

One day at a time…as they say. Someone told me to give myself a break. I’m doing that; taking a break from social media, and TV for a week, maybe longer. I’ll do my best to just chill and let the ideas flow, but no promises.

What do you do to keep the ideas flowing? What inspires you to write these days? I hope you’re having a better time writing that I have been!

Have a great week, friends! Stay safe!

Yippee Ki Yay!

Happy Birthday to me! Yesterday I turned…nevermind. I’m still under 60, let’s leave it at that. I’m old enough to have experienced some major bullshit that no woman should ever have to go through but I’m still kicking! That blasted menopause and all that comes with her and old age can kiss my ever lovin’ ass.

Yay me, another birthday.

It’s not bad enough I have arthritis but I also have bone and joint damage in my knees so that makes exercise nearly impossible. I can barely walk, or stand upright for fuck’s sake. Thanks to my doctor at the time, I didn’t get any help early on to slow the progression, so it just got worse and worse. When I finally found a good doctor, the damage was done.

Groaning and creaking is now the language of my people.

Then menopause marches into my life. That bitch. I was happy to no longer have a monthly cycle but I can do without the continued hot flashes, chills, night sweats, weight gain, moodiness (Who? Me? Moody?), not to mention the weight gain and sleep problems. I’ve already had enough of that but why not add more? While you’re at it, Ms. Menopause Bitch, you might as well slow my energy and metabolism down even more than it was already. I just have one question: When will you be finished with me?

If menopause had a face…

Getting older has its perks; discounts, grand kids, wisdom, more empathy, clearer priorities, less drama, knowing our worth, and not putting up with less than we deserve, etc. But I don’t think I deserve all the crap splattered on me as I’ve grown older.

Perks include drinking all the damn alcohol you want!

I’m even starting to look like an old lady. My youth is gone. I’m a grandmother. Thanks, kids. YOU made me old. Just kidding. But seriously, I look in the mirror and I don’t recognize the person looking back at me. All those wrinkles and the sagging jowls make me look like someone else! The gray hair I can cover – that is, I used to cover. I haven’t been to the hairdresser since early March. I don’t see myself going anytime soon, either. Stupid 2020.

I swear, I have looked in the mirror and acted this very same way!

My bladder is a royal pain in the… bladder. I have to get up every 2 hours at night and it’s pretty much the same during the day. Before coronavirus, every time I left the house, the trip was planned around where the damn bathrooms were located! I think I know of every stinkin’ handicap accessible bathroom for 100 miles in all directions!

Doesn’t work that way!

It’s hard enough having to rely on a cane or crutch to get around but using them leaves me with only one available hand for carrying things or doing a quick task. On top of that, my hands are clumsy. I knock shit over, drop things on the floor, spill every stinkin’ time, and I swear if I drop one more thing today, I’ll scream! I can’t open packaging of any kind without scissors. I miss the trash can every damn time. I’m shocked that I can still crochet!

This isn’t far from the truth!

I have age spots and calcium deposits starting to pop up. My skin is drier than the Mojave Desert, regardless of the brand or type of moisturizer I use. It doesn’t even matter how much I slather on or how often! Ugh!

I swear, if my skin gets any drier, you’ll be seeing particles swooshing on the surface like in the desert wind.

I have CRS (Can’t Remember Shit). My brain can’t seem to stay focused because it’s focused on my pain and getting me from point A to point B without falling, so by the time I get to point B, I’ve forgotten what I was going to do. I shit you not. I try to remember everything in one trip but it never fails, I forget something. I’ve been told to write things down, make a list. You think I haven’t thought of that? I have lists all over the damn house!

I swear, I write down everything and still forget!

My eyes are going kaput. I need new glasses but I’m not going to the eye doctor until this virus is gone or we have vaccinations. I remind myself of the old-time glasses for people who couldn’t see their hand in front of their faces. Remember how thick the lenses were? I see myself wearing those eventually.

I might be able to see again someday!

I’m sick of crazy hair growing in the weirdest places. Like one solitary hair growing out of the middle of my forehead…or the one that grows out from under my chin. Wtf is up with that? I’m constantly looking for them but I seem to only find them when they’re an inch long. Then there are the ingrown and course hairs that grow above my lip. It’s like Mother Nature thinks I’m a man and that I need a mustache to keep my lip warm.

Good thing my ‘mustache’ isn’t this dark!

I’m shrinking. I was never very tall in the first place. Well, in Elementary school I was one of the tallest kids in school at 5’3″. The problem is, I never got any taller than I was in the 6th freakin’ grade! I have lost a little over an inch. I can’t reach, even on my tippy-toes some things that were never that big of a deal before. I can’t even get the laundry out of the washing machine because the drum is too deep. I just can’t reach!

I’m not quite this short!

On the bright side, I still have my own teeth, and my hearing is still somewhat okay; unless of course, you try to tell me something from the other room facing the opposite direction, while the tv is turned up, the water is running because I’m washing dishes, and the washing machine and dryer are also running. Then I can’t hear for shit. Just ask Dad.

Are you talking?

I write this with much exaggeration and cynicism but I know it’s just the way it is and there’s nothing I can do about getting older. As much as I despise my body for turning on me so soon, I still like the person I have become. I’m strong, and I’m smart. I know how to do a lot of things; I just can’t do many of them. I’m honest. I’m grateful. I’m a loyal friend but I’m not afraid to let go of friendships that harm my mental health. I’m a good person. I’m still not going to act my age, no matter how old I feel. I’m still going to laugh at inappropriate times at inappropriate things. (Like farts. Farts are funny.) I like my sense of humor. I might be old but I still have a lot to offer. I’m still fucking awesome!

I can only hope to be as cool as Betty White!

A good friend told me the other day, “Embrace your battle scars. You’re a survivor.” She also told me to not dwell on the bad stuff. Good thing she doesn’t live close or she’d kick my ass after reading this post! In all seriousness though, I am a survivor; I don’t feel like one most days but I still manage to pick myself up and give another day a good run for its money…

So, Happy Birthday to me! Maybe I’ll make it to 102 years old and still be laughing like this old gal!

I love that she can laugh at herself!

So, What’s Next?

I am so sick of hearing people say, “Stay positive,” or “Have you tried x, y, or z?” No one understands the limitations of chronic pain unless they actually live it themselves. They think they’re being helpful with the positive outlook remarks and suggestions to cure my ailment. I know they mean well but they don’t understand. Those with chronic pain don’t want to be depressed. They don’t want to be sad. They don’t like staying home. When you’ve been trying to get help for over 10 years, you kind of lose hope and you lose yourself along the way too.

I’m nothing like the person I once was! I was a cross-country backpacker, worked with special ed kids, cleaned houses and started my own home Day Care for kids. I did volunteer work, worked as a Med Tech, started my own home business…and now I can’t do any of those things. I was a very independent young woman, with a great sense of humor. I was bubbly and always saw the humor in things. A great example is the time a co-worker and I were helping an elderly lady to the bathroom at the nursing home where we worked. We didn’t get her there in time and I ended up with “splatters of a yucky nature” all over my shoes. All I could do was laugh – not at the elderly lady – but at the situation. What else could I do? That’s just how I was. I had co-workers tell me they loved working with me because the day was enjoyable and went by faster. Don’t get me wrong; I still laugh a lot! I still try to find humor in my life daily, but that doesn’t mean I’m ok with being ‘stuck’ in this rut….and STUCK I am!

This chapter of my life is a most difficult one. I try to stay positive and focus on the things that I can do instead of the things that I can’t but do you know how difficult that really is? There is so much I can’t do! 

So, how do I create Deb 2.0? How can I reinvent myself when there’s so much I can’t do? My physical abilities limit the things I can do to actually change my life, myself. My bestie says that reinventing myself implies there’s something wrong with me in the first place. She’s right. There IS something wrong with me. I’m disabled. How does a disabled person change his/her life?

I would love to change my physical health but alas, that won’t happen until doctors decide they will help. I like who I am otherwise. I like my personality. I like my sense of humor. I am a strong, intelligent, creative, and compassionate person. So, how do I change this chapter of my life into something that I can be happy with?