Del's blog: Upswing!

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CZ75
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Postby CZ75 » Thu Mar 26, 2015 7:28 am

This is good writing... "Then he turned away and refused to look at me, and a thought occurred.

Oh dear gods... did I hurt his feelings?? I didn't think THAT could happen! Not in ANY of my scenarios did his feelings get hurt as a result. NONE. And there were like, ten possibilities in my head. I was fixated on his hate. Hate doesn't feel bad, it feels arrogant and controlling and...

Ugh. So now we DEFINITELY don't talk, and the place is even worse.

I'm batting a million over here.

I feel like my brain has all these keys to social situations - like one of those giant janitor key rings, just completely loaded up. And my challenge is always to find the right one, and not forget where it went. And now these are all unfamiliar keys and I don't have the recall I once felt I did."

For years, you've been turning your everyday life into thousand word stories that are quite interesting. Find a theme to unify these tales (salvation and overcoming through perseverance or perhaps with the loving help of a good mate) and turn it into a book, fiction or nonfiction, doesn't matter. In the last 20 years I've told maybe 5 people that they should write a book--none of them ever has, though. It would be great if I finally pushed somebody to do it.
"We're gonna rob them blind, Stacy. We're taking everything, right down the the light fixtures and the dust under the chairs. We're gonna do them like the Grinch did Hooville."
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Delaney
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Postby Delaney » Thu Apr 02, 2015 8:30 am

:oops:

Wow, thanks... and actually I think you have inspired me... I even started re-reading some old stuff... its alot of bad writing but there are a few gems. Kind of depressing blog though, and the ending I think would have to be fiction, because I don't have my happy ending yet in real life.

1. As for that... got the news my sister remarried again. I had had no idea, we don't speak. She remarried her ex husband which really challenges my gag reflex. Gross.

You know, you could read this blog, and see a thousand different terrible mate and life choices I've made. And its true. I make terrible life decisions.

But at least I don't MARRY them. Personally I think that puts me squarely in the win pile.

2. I'm pretty sure I drunk dialed someone last night. I don't remember who it was. :roll:

3. I am currently at Mark's home. He left for Denver on Monday and I saw an opportunity for solace and self-loathing in peace. I dropped out of class because I couldn't face it again after my last humiliating failure, and in an unrelated note, I think I've been bitten by the unrequited love fairy again. I figure I can't possibly ruin anything from far away, so I took advantage of the alone time.

At home, things seem to be a little better, maybe. The other day John actually made eye contact, and Nikki was talking to me all friendly and normal like we used to, and it was the best day in like... a really long time. I was elated. I wanted to throw my arms around them and scream "Iloveyouiloveyouiloveyou!!!!"

But thought it in poor taste, and probably would not be well-received.

Also I miss Mark :( And I need to get laid... soooo I really miss Mark.

Mark asked me a little while ago, when we were hypothesizing about me moving in, getting a puppy, and having a less adventurous and stumble-as-I-go existence... "Yes, but would you be CONTENT?"

Hit the nail on the head there. Probably not. I don't even know if any conventional relationship would feel right at this point. But I don't know what I'm looking for either exactly. It'd be nice if I could just have a line-up: "Yes, I'll take one of him, and her, and him too. That's okay, right? Can I check out now? Too many items?"

I guess I'll just stumble along for now.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Postby CZ75 » Mon Apr 06, 2015 9:41 am

More happens to you in a week than to most people in years. You have SO MUCH material. For nonfiction there probably needs to be SOME ending, not necessarily a happy one. If there's no ending yet, just go with fiction.

Now that you're inspired, (because of me) it's time to get cracking!
"We're gonna rob them blind, Stacy. We're taking everything, right down the the light fixtures and the dust under the chairs. We're gonna do them like the Grinch did Hooville."
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Postby Delaney » Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:34 pm

You should be seeing something posted soon in the Writing Blog :wink:

The other night I couldn't sleep. It was worse than the usual insomnia, and continues to be a problem.

But that night, I was scheduled for a double shift at my new job, and lack of sleep and a schedule like that usually translates into a very, VERY bad day.

It was the best day.

I think I f*cking love my job.

It feels good to DO good. It feels good to be effective. I spent an entire 16 hours getting to know a bunch of kids society has cast off and I get to improve their lives a little. One girl has all but attached herself to me and learning about her and her life really puts some things for me in perspective.

I recently tried to reach out a little to my roomies, and personally I think it was a wasted effort. And after that, I couldn't shake the feeling that maybe all of it was just a lost cause. To be honest I feel a little duped - I thought they were my friends. But Nikki made a comment about people at work asking about me and the tone of her voice just made me go, 'Oh no.... no no no no no. This responsibility cannot POSSIBLY fall to me. I wasn't even there, I can't control what other people say or do, and if THIS resentment has anything to do with the general feeling I've been getting around here, I am officially done caring.'

This is quickly turning into the most immature relationship I've ever been a part of... and I'm COUNTING the one in Sunday School when I broke up with 5 year old Daniel because he blew me off to play with the trains.

Little bastard.

So I've just gotten to a place where I've got no more interest and no more expectations. Sometimes things just don't work out. Sometimes people aren't who you thought they were to you.

But now I'm back in a field that I love, building relationships with kids who need positive people around. I watch them interact with each other and it is amazing to witness how quickly things can escalate... one minute everybody's dancing and best friends, the next one triggers one emotion and then another gets triggered and another... and suddenly everybody forgot they were friends 10 minutes ago.

Its like watching my home, on replay.

And we're in our f*cking thirties...

Wake-up call.

So, still working on some clarity... but at least I'm feeling like I'm finding it.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Postby CZ75 » Fri Apr 10, 2015 10:11 am

Who is Nikki? My head spins with your relationships, which is not necessarily a bad thing... I think.
"We're gonna rob them blind, Stacy. We're taking everything, right down the the light fixtures and the dust under the chairs. We're gonna do them like the Grinch did Hooville."
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Postby Delaney » Thu Apr 30, 2015 11:38 pm

Wow, already character list time eh? Well, in the short term, without much expansion, I live with 3 other people. I met Nikki at my old job, where I at least felt we bonded instantly. Of course everything is very different lately. I was also like, madly in love with her the first time I caught sight of a beautiful head of asymmetrical hair and the sweetest, most poetry-worthy lips ever, but after putting it out there (albeit timidly) I soon discovered the feelings went one way.

So I rebounded. But even that relationship has gone and past and things aren't any better.

In fact, sometimes I feel more comfortable with her mom. And that's saying something, because she is Nikki's 'Mom' and thus automatically falls into 'authority figure' territory, which makes me want to run away. But she's always been really sweet, and even though things feel awkward in the house (shall expand another time) she still is the only one who will ask about my day, check in to see what's up or even acknowledge my birthday. She got me Chinese food on my birthday and on Christmas even gave me a little card AND Tarot cards, which if you think about it was incredibly thoughtful, cause those decks are not always cheap, and the birthday meal was especially cool because that birthday beforehand had SUCKED.

John is Nikki's hot fiancé. He lives here too, obviously.

I don't want to talk about it.

I'm tired. I just got out of work and tonight wasn't totally sucky but just sucky enough to peel me away from actual writing and indulge in Gregory House's shenanigans and pessimism on Netflix. But I couldn't resist coming back because GOOD NEWS!!! I broke my computer!!!!

Wait. That didn't come out right.

I broke my old laptop - kneed it good right where it counts - and had to resort to playing movies and trying to type on a very small screen. Mark said he was going to give me a free laptop, but as I know Mark, I know it'll be another 6 months before I get it. So I ran out of patience and, oh, right...

GOOD NEWS!!!!! I got a new pretty pink laptop!!!!
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Postby CZ75 » Fri May 29, 2015 9:24 am

Check your pm
"We're gonna rob them blind, Stacy. We're taking everything, right down the the light fixtures and the dust under the chairs. We're gonna do them like the Grinch did Hooville."
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Re: Del's blog: Play dead.

Postby Delaney » Wed Aug 19, 2015 6:47 am

Okay... first of all, I have to say Charlie, the wordtrip makeover is totally freaking me out. Not to say I don't like it - I don't KNOW yet. Because my body feels like it was struck by lightning upon gazing at the page.

:shock: Woah.

So, what I did on my summer vacation. First some clarification: while I recognize that most people consider summer to begin somewhere around June, for me it begins whenever it becomes uncomfortably HOT. And I like the cold... anything above 65 degrees is just unsettling. So May.

Its been a very, VERY busy, dramatic summer.

I should probably round off my last post. The situation with my roomates, and all the interesting stories that could've come from it, did not last long. It very shortly became unbearable, and while I don't want to dwell on every little slight I feel I should give a brief explanation.

When I met Nikki I was struck by how incredibly NICE she was. Almost too good to be true. Also, having a big ol' crush on her didn't make my observations any more reliable. John, by association I also defined as very nice, though definitely an asshole. And yes, the conditions can co-exist. Also in his own right, I grew to like him for being funny and sort of unpredictable. I also admired his musical talent, though he rarely put it to good use.

What I failed to consider is that sometimes people aren't being nice, they're being passive. And being passive often leads to being passive aggressive, and this is MADDENING to live with, seriously. I, and others, had noticed this occasionally but it got worse when I quit my job in favor of a much lower paying one. The lower paying job was more rewarding, but I can only suspect that this caused a few ruffled feathers. See, before when I had a much higher paycheck, I not only paid my rent in full but often gave extra, sometimes a lot extra. Or I'd buy a $100 weed bag to share or something. So everybody stayed moderately happy. But upon taking this job I could no longer do that, so I would pay my rent in full, and ask if they needed extra. They never said yes.

So I didn't spare it. But suddenly I could do nothing right. If somebody dropped or spilled something in the house, John would automatically blame me. If the internet got shut off, I'd get a snarky text message. Oh, and if I went out and bought anything special for myself - behold the stink-eye. One time I ordered pizza delivery, and when I came back in with it John gave me the angriest look, shook his head and swore under his breath. WTF right? I can't treat myself to a pizza with MY MONEY?

And the money thing reared its head in other instances, especially with John, which I found especially confounding since he had none of his own. He worked sporadically if ever, sometimes made enough money doing recordings for wannabe white rap kids that he could keep himself in RedBulls and cigarettes, yet felt more than perfectly entitled to tell other people what to do with their cash flow. Another time - involving pizza incidentally, must be a trigger for him - I ordered delivery and though I specified on the phone that the driver would need change because I only had a $100 dollar bill, the kid showed up without it. This used to happen to me when I worked at WINGS all the time. Either the message doesn't get across or somebody forgets... but as I was pretty regular, I didn't think it would be a big deal. I had JUST enough money - with quarters - to pay the bill without the tip, and I felt bad about that. Especially as I am an excellent tipper, which John also knew, as he had remarked on it before. So WHY he loved to pick on this was beyond me. Anyways, I told the guy I'd get him next time and no big deal right?

So John takes it upon himself to lecture me on the importance of tipping ( :roll: ), and even AFTER this day EVERY time there was food involved he would BOUND up the stairs and DEMAND to know what I paid.

So I basically told him to f*ck off, because while I agree with you about it, even if I didn't you still have no right to tell me what to do with my money. Because its mine. As long as you get rent, back off.

This did not make matters any better. He basically stopped talking to me, and meanwhile, Nikki was acting all pissy as well, and I couldn't really figure out why. To this day I'm still not really sure what changed. We got along wonderfully in the beginning. But then there were little offhand comments, like calling me John's "girlfriend", pointedly telling me that she didn't like having other girls in the house with him (then don't move one IN...) and insinuating that I care too much about being sexy.

I mean, if you think sexy is a flannel bathrobe and major twisted bedhead... ok. To each their own.

And that was wearing down my nerves because seriously... I didn't even TRY to hit that. And I had a little crush on him sooo that's saying something. And yet still, I get NO credit. Unbelievable. It probably didn't help that one time Nikki was trying to get some personal time with John, and he couldn't be bothered until I said I'd do it for him (half-serious... she was hot) and then, in true stereotypical male behavior, he agreed to come up in a bit. Oh, NOW you'll come up..." was Nikki's reply. Please note that at this point I was just sitting awkwardly chain smoking.

Still, I don't think *I* deserved the bitchiness as *I* am not responsible for other people's asshole-dom. And yet.

Sometimes when I got an especially bitchy comment or the walkaway for no reason, I would just masturbate and moan an unintelligible "o-o-ohn" loudly through my door.

Call it an asshole tax.

Alright alright, so at this point I was definitely being driven to resent the little f*ckers, and becoming pretty passive-aggressive bitchy myself. But the final straw was when I came full circle about the money thing. At this point I had put up with random bitchiness and offhand comments, overheard them all talking sh!# about me, had been demanded in what to do with my personal finances, and also been the butt of passive-aggressive "jokes" due to the nature of my new employment (rehabilitating teens with behavioral/mental/family issues) insinuating that I was some sanctimonious pain in the ass who thought she was better than them. (I remember telling the full story of that last one to Mark, and he laughed and said, "And DO you think you're better than them?" To which I replied, "I do NOW, but not for that.")

And then I started to get real quiet around the house and just listened... and what I heard most often, from both Nikki AND John, was the motto, "They're paying you, so be nice to them."

They had been saying it all along. But it rang true, And it wasn't just me... it was a pattern. John often had people coming in out of the house to do some recordings or whatever, almost all kids with varying degrees of talent. And everytime he would bemoan how difficult it was to put up with such talentless hacks, to which Nikki would reply, "Well he's paying you, so be nice." "Yup, he's paying me..."

The most notable victim of this motto was a regular, Sean, who despite my personal reservations, was basically a sweet kid, and LOVED being there. He was at that house more often than I was. He was the Kimmy Gibbler to our Full House. And especially loved John, I could see it so plainly. This kid had a lot of issues, and was often incoherent in his songs, and John would kinda smooth it out and in essence, give the guy a voice.

And after he left, they'd talk sh!# about him everytime.

And I realized that they did that with me too. These people I considered friends. Who told me it was "safe." But they were just being nice - passive - until I couldn't give them extra money.

So I moved out. Gave my last months rent and moved in with Mark.

But now we're getting ahead of ourselves, because while all THAT was happening...

I was single again and that means I was basically flirting with anything that moved. And now I had a whole new flock of co-workers to do it with. But the most interesting situation was with the brothers.

I had met Francisco at orientation for my new job. And no, not THAT Francisco, although life has apparently seen fit to bombard me with the name. Right away I liked him. But he was 3rd shift, I was 2nd, he was also a little quiet at work and just basically didn't seem interested. Until one day out of the blue, he came up to me and flirted away. It was actually some of the kids who noticed it first, telling me in their oh-so-tactful way that he was "wanting to hit that!"

Ah, teenagers and their wanton observations.

This is a good time to make a note about the nature of my job. Working with underprivileged/behaviorally challenged teens can make for a very chaotic workplace. I was fortunate that my particular skill turned out to be de-escalating, so I never had to do a restraint. But often there was still fighting, and when those kids are swinging at each other, or staff, or hurling things around the room, (my head once got in the way of a misdirected phone receiver) its easy to feel like you're in a kind of foxhole.

So staff bond. Its Human Services after all, so people tend to be a little more comfortable with each other.

And Francisco and I began to feel VERY comfortable. He would come to relieve me from 2nd shift and once he asked me to stay and talk. And then it became an expectation. We would flirt, certainly, but we would also talk about EVERYTHING. It was a great way to decompress after a challenging day. We exchanged numbers, and then we'd chat even outside of work.

I felt oddly flattered by his attention too. Because he.was.PRETTY. By gods, was he pretty. Big brown eyes, perfect skin, gorgeous lips... A little on the small side, but just cute as anything.

Now shortly after we stated this, another co-worker started to take an interest. Will had been with the company for awhile, was in good standing, a military type guy, tall in stature, broad shouldered and the owner of movie star handsome looks that I usually immediately dismiss a person for. And in his friendly, unassuming way, he also asked for my number.

Now usually I really wouldn't pay any attention to this type of guy. I usually find that type arrogant or intimidating and I get GI Joe syndrome and find myself running from any possible interaction. But he opened with an exception: "I'm a follower of Christ, I've been saved, and I live by that."

Ohhhh okay, I thought. Now I get it. You're stupid. I can work with that. (No offence meant to any followers of Christ that may be reading this blog... although come to that you really shouldn't be reading an atheist's hedonistic life stories so... ultimately, your bad.)

Anyways when he asked for my number and gave me his I was put in an awful position. On the one hand, getting involved with anyone was really not my intent. Even with Francisco. Most of the time flirting is simply a way to keep me from being bored, a lot of the time I'm all talk and no game, and since I had JUST broken up with my girlfriend not long ago, I wasn't really looking to sleep with anyone, for any reason. I just wasn't feeling it.

But on the OTHER hand, here's this gorgeous GI Joe guy, AND he's a Christian AND he's abstaining, AND he has a girlfriend.... oh my, this was hitting every ONE of my ghosts from churches past. Corruption just started to seem like... the right thing to do.

But I told myself, you know what? You need a distraction. Your roommates are assholes and you're depressed, your job is hard, you're underpaid... let's say we just engage in a little experiment, for the purposes of entertainment.

I figured when he texted me that night it was 10 to 1 whether he would hit on me or try to convert me.

Filthy, FILTHY boy. Seriously, I barely had to say anything. I was drinking whiskey and all I had to do was ask, So. What's YOUR whiskey?

Filthy, FILTHY boy.

This continued for a few weeks, and I was still hanging out with Francisco too, who made it very clear that he had the feels for me. We had some pretty exciting texts sent to each other too but, he still stood apart from any other guy, including hot Will, because we enjoyed each others company. Will only wanted to talk about sex, and HAVE sex.

I could go into more details but.... I'm not going to. Partially because its kinda long and drawn out and this post is already way too long but mostly because I don't come out very well in it.

I found out they were brothers. Living in the same house, at the same job, hitting on the same girl... and only I knew. And I knew it was a dick move but it was so funny at first that I was all but eating popcorn watching the situation unfold. I mean seriously... don't you people TALK?? But the more I got to know Francisco, the worse I felt. Unfortunately by then, it was too late - they found out.

Will and I had an argument and stopped talking to each other. Then he went on vacation for two weeks and when he came back, quit on his first day after seeing me.

He was prone to dramatics.

Francisco was angry at first but seeing as there was no official understanding between us, he let it go, and we're actually still friends. Though we dropped the romance thing awhile ago.

And after that, I realized that my life had become so stressful and chaotic that I wasn't even trying to suppress my inner a$$hole anymore. Believe me, I knew damn well the thing was there, but I usually can keep it under wraps better than this. But I hadn't even been trying. Between living arrangement issues, dropping out of school, and my life occasionally being threatened by some wayward kid with a record, I just didn't have the energy to do it. So I just... lashed out.

So I did make some changes. I moved out, and moved in with Mark, who loves me and it is much easier to live with somebody who actually gives a damn about you. I also realized that it was probably time to get back on my meds and make an effort NOT to be a stressed out, angry, miserable girl who lashes out at others to make herself feel better. And I requested a transfer from my job, to one that is not only closer, but 3rd shift, and a lot less stressful. I'll be honest I really miss the kids - I was surprised to find that I had "fav staff" status among most of them, but it was too much all at once.

We have... what? A week and a half of summer left? I cannot WAIT for this summer to be over.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Re: Del's blog: What I did on my summer vacation...

Postby Delaney » Fri Sep 04, 2015 12:01 am

OMG... why is it so HOT still???

I started my new job - well, transfer. It is quite uneventful. I transferred to 3rd shift as a way to de-stress and get my head together while I adapt to my recent move. It has been a bit of an adjustment. Mark and I have lived together before, so in a lot of ways its pretty easygoing, but that was also a long time ago and he has settled in nicely as a comfortable bachelor and I have always been more of a... squatter.

The relationship thing also worries me a little. I love Mark, more than anybody really. But once I moved in I knew what would happen: almost out of habit, we'd be dating. No conversation would take place, it would just happen. And it isn't even that I don't want to be with him... I just still haven't decided what to make of the whole love and relationships thing and where I stand in it. Sometimes I don't think I'm really built for monogamy, sometimes I think I just suck at intimacy, sometimes I think I should just travel the world, f*cking as I go. I even was seriously considering buying a camper to just like, LIVE in. I mean, I fall rapturously in love for people ALL THE TIME. I don't even have to really know them. So why not just go with it?

My moods have been unpredictable for awhile. Though I noticed since my transfer that although I'm less stressed out, I'm also... deflated. I'll get the sudden urgency to plan my life and freak out because NOW I'M 30 and what the hell should I be doing with my life??? Annnnd then contemplating giving up on life altogether. Maybe live in the woods and make moonshine until I die of alcohol poisoning. Or I could become a drug addict. I feel I would be well suited to be a drug addict. Because life is pointless and nobody really has a purpose anyway. After all, no matter what the world accomplishes, great feats of mankind, whathaveyou... we're still just a spec in the universe and every human will eventually go the way of every other human, and our lives and names lost forever, the universe totally unchanged for having us been here. Completely ineffectual.

Sunny stuff. So that's been the basic mindsets for me every day except today, it was marginally lessened. I couldn't figure out why I felt slightly better, and then it dawned on me: I had a nice morning with the kids at work today. It was nothing special or remarkable, just kind of an entertaining morning... I was starting to remember names and stuff. When I transferred I went from 2nd shift to 3rd, so instead of being in the thick of things and transporting kids HERE, going with this one THERE, I barely saw any kids at all. Then school started. It hadn't even registered in me that, duh, kids have to go to school, and PROBABLY get up early... so I was totally unprepared and nervous about it. Like, I wasn't even sure who everyone was. And these are tough kids. So I just had this image of myself helplessly standing and shouting "YOU! Hey, YOU. Stop slamming her head against the window! I said YOUUU!!!"

But today... I was starting to remember a few, and have conversations, and I realized I was really missing hanging out with the kids. I mean, I needed a break but, I really did love that part of my job even when I was pissed off.

I also miss Francisco. I just miss having that friend... he still texts sometimes but its not the same as seeing each other 5 days a week and talking for hours after a shift. I keep trying to get him to transfer and he was on board with the idea, but its not like a guarantee.

I guess I'm just in a sentimental mood.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Re: Del's blog: What I did on my summer vacation...

Postby Delaney » Fri Sep 18, 2015 12:16 am

In a week I go to LA. This will be the first vacation I think I've had in like, 5 years. I mean a real vacation, with shows, theme restaurants, beaches, and a length of time extending beyond a weekend.

A whole week. That's madness. It feels so strange.

I am ridiculously overdue. My lack of true vacationing is probably what fuels my super productive work ethic. If you are unclear as to what that entails - I am currently at work right now. Writing this. Because chores.

Naw, it isn't all that bad. Except everybody is leaving again. I have favorite staying and the other moving on to greener pastures, Francisco still hasn't even approached the transfer idea yet, and I miss him like crazy.

Boo. I miss having someone to talk to. Not just anyone, someone like Francisco. Because when he would see me his eyes would light up and I could tell we weren't just talking because. He enjoyed talking with me. And I could tell him anything, pretty much. Oh and the banter, the banter! SO much fun.

Oooooo my gods this is going to take forever to get over.... I'm even getting sick of listening to MYSELF.

But maybe this vacation will help. Like, maybe I'm like some kind of appliance, and I just need the internal button to pop for a bit and someone can reset me. LA could be my reset button...

I still feel like sh!# about everything. EVERYTHING. EveryONE. On the one hand I feel lonely, but I also have like, zero interest in socializing. If I had my way I'd be alone and unnoticed for an unspecified amount of time, until I was ready not to feel... like this. People would bump into me on the sidewalk, have full private conversations right in front of me and I'd just be there, un-helpfully listening in and sewing reflectors to my clothes so unobservant drivers won't sputter and kill me during my period of anonymity. And I could just, not talk. I'm just so over talking.

There's this book my grandmother gave me called "A Time to Keep Silent"... she bought it because the main character had the same name as mine, but it turned out to be one of my absolute favorite books for a totally unexpected reason. Its about this girl that one day just decides she doesn't want to talk anymore. And despite the maddening response of everyone around her, she doesn't. But she makes friends (one human, one goat), still manages to communicate just fine and feels better that way. I always wanted to do that. Why not? Why can't we just making talking more an option and less of a primary means to communication.

I'm just SO done with talking...

Plus, what's becoming alarmingly clear is that I'm pretty sure humanity is just winging it. I'm like, 99.9 percent sure everybody has just been f*cking around for millions of years and talking about it REALLY LOUDLY to convince themselves they have any clue as to what to do with our existence.

Which boils down to killing time.

Or not.

You could kill yourself soon as you get wise to it. Or not.

Doesn't matter. Nothing anyone has or ever will do has ever meant anything at all.

So I'll kill some time in LA. It wasn't my choice at all to go to LA for a vacation. That was alllll Mark. I've never been but it sounds hot, sweaty, shallow, and not biodegradable.

So Hell. It might be Hell.

I think I can work with that though. I'll see how well I can employ a metaphorical 'zone' of "don't-bother-me-I'm-not-talking-and-you-can't-make-me."

Or maybe I'll just have a lot of fun and some kind of resurgence of personality. Fingers crossed.
Last edited by Delaney on Fri Sep 18, 2015 12:18 am, edited 1 time in total.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Re: Del's blog: What I did on my summer vacation...

Postby Delaney » Sat Sep 19, 2015 4:58 am

Bad day... bad bad bad bad day. Need to rant.

Soooo I get out of work, minding my own business, trying to get home before I fall asleep at the wheel. I hit every red light, every traffic jam, every schoolbus had to stop right then and there. But I just let it go, because at least it killed some time before the store opened. This my routine: get out of work, buy a little boxed wine, drink it, sleep, eat, get ready for work again. The earliest liquor store opens at 8am, which is about the time I'm getting home.

So I do my thing, tried to be chipper enough for the brief interaction with the guy behind the counter, who is always a LITTLE too nice to me, I leave with my purchase. Then the guy comes running out to my car to deliver the keys I had absentmindedly left on the counter.

Instead of just leaving it at that, he dangles the keys by my window and says, "You just wanted me to come back to see you, didn't you?" Now this guy is definitely flirtatious, but until now he's always just been overly complimentary.

But today, he decided to tell me that he was happy to return my keys so he could look at my boobs one more time.

Ugggghhhh... very VERY uncomfortable. Oh, and that ties in directly to another annoyance I had been dealing with, which was wearing a new bra that made my boobs... I don't know... pop a little. So I had to keep fixing them all night. I should've tried the damn thing on beforehand, but it was the mall, and the bright lights were making my head hurt, and it was busy, so I was just DONE. I just grabbed my size and got outta there.

It's nice to be admired sometimes, and I don't go out of my way to cover every little bit of skin up because its stupid and kinda sexist and it doesn't make any difference anyway when you're carrying around a pair of F's for life, but that doesn't mean I needed that kind of attention at the time either. Like, now I have to either suck it up and try to ignore his uncomfortable gaze, or avoid the place and just wait until 10am or another store to open.

All because this idiot had to cross the line. I mean, HELLO, I AM A CUSTOMER. WTF ARE YOU THINKING???

So I go to sleep, and Mark returns from work, I hear him vaguely, and then suddenly he's banging stuff around the apartment - very uncharacteristic - and basically just being a stark raving asshole. Then I'm awake, and I'm trying to go back to sleep, I can't, and so we start fighting because I was soooo mad. And he says its because the bedroom was hot, and he didn't like that I was sleeping on the couch. Course I was sleeping on the couch because the bedroom WAS HOT and I HAD TO SLEEP not struggle for hours to get cool. We've had sleeping issues due to conflicting schedule and the a/c being remarkably stubborn about only reaching the living room, but there really isn't much of a solution. We just have to wait for the weather to change.

Anyways, screaming fit, told him I don't want to go to LA anymore, and went out to sleep in my car.

Ugh. I know this is just normal living arrangement challenges, but sometimes he does drive me f*cking insane. Like he'll say jokingly that he's perfect, but I swear he believes it a little. Also ever since he lost weight, he's been kind of d*ck about it. He does that snotty thing that people do when they're vegan and they really want you to remember EVERYTIME they eat that NOT ONLY AM I EATING HEALTHIER THAN YOU BUT MY DIET SAVES LIVES bullshit. Except he's not vegan, he's just annoying, and I've told him to cut the sh*t several times before because I DON'T BELIEVE IN DIETING AND I LIKE MY WEIGHT but he still DOES it! And like, he acts as though he's this real picky clean freak when really, I come home and half the time he's ransacked the place, and sometimes it smells.... like to the point where I HAVE to open the windows. And I don't even make an issue out of it or call him out for always complaining about how the apartment looks...

And then like, as I said before, I do have this concern that I really don't know about all this 'playing house' and why can't he EVER just TALK to me about US. Like get personal. Engage. But again, I usually just get the impression that he wants sex. Mostly because he always wants sex. But not talk about where we are with each other or how we feel about the whole thing.

And honestly, every time Mark and I have broken up in the past, its been for this reason. We just don't talk about important things in the relationship.

Oh! And the F*CKING CRITICISM. This guy criticizes everything. If he goes out to eat, he'll gobble the whole thing up and then criticize the meal. The menu, the atmosphere, everything. Movies too. He could sit there and enjoy a movie but gods forbid you have half a second to discuss your favorite part because Mark already has a dozen things about it to mock, scorn, and complain about what a waste of money it was.

He complains about money incessantly. He's the director of a marketing company, and gets paid so much I just had to stop thinking about it. He tries to act as though he's this ultra responsible person, watching every penny and living like someone on welfare, which wouldn't be such an issue but I can't f#$%ing listen to him bitch about all of his non problems anymore. Like, dude, you are not poor. You have no idea what its like to be underpaid and actually struggle. You have never been homeless, you have never couch surfed for a prolonged amount of time, you have never had to live in your car while you're pregnant because your mother told you that's what you deserve. YOU'RE BETTER THAN FINE and more than a little ungrateful for it.

He grew up poor, his dad was always sick, and his mother struggled to keep the family afloat. But Mark never really had to worry about that. And at least in his adult life... school was paid for in full and then some, a family connection helped him hone his skills for a decent resume, and he's been FLUSH EVER SINCE. YET HE CAN'T FIND A SINGLE THING THAT CAN LIVE UP TO HIS STANDARDS.

He's actually had a mostly good life, and complains about all of it. Even when he's around his mom, he's gotta pick on her and complain and point out all her flaws and I have often smacked him for this which does nothing to deter him.

He and I need to have a serious talk. I want to figure out if he actually wants me to BE with him or if he just wants me out like, habit. And I'm going to have to confront him with my concerns as well about my current feelings regarding relationships, because the less we talk the worse it gets. I mean he apologized, like always, and he's been wonderful in so many ways... but I feel... controlled. And not really because of him necessarily, but I just feel... RUSHED. And like some things are just EXPECTED.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Re: Del's blog: What I did on my summer vacation...

Postby Delaney » Wed Sep 30, 2015 8:10 pm

Just as it was starting to get cooler out - here we are in LA. I started my vacation in 90 degree weather and was not optimistic about how this whole thing was unfolding. First, I was not told - possibly deliberately - that Mark's sister's apartment has no air conditioning. That could've been a deal breaker but at this point it was too late. Secondly, my wardrobe is made up of what I describe as "New England neutral", which means I didn't invest in a lot of flip flops, bathing suits, summer-y things like that. So when we got off the plane, Mark and I decided to go out and purchase some of these overlooked items. I mean, its LA right? Summer all year round?

We went to Target, Kmart, and some other rinky-dink stores I cannot remember the names of.

They did not sell fans.

They did not sell sandals or flip flops of any kind.

They did not sell bathing suits.

And when I inquired as to the baffling lack of items I assume residents of LA would need all year round, I got these confused looks and "It's September."

I will have you know that they have a wide array of wool sweaters, over coats, boots... you know, things you might need for pretending to shovel imaginary snow.

I was having real doubts about the collective intelligence of California.

We ended up having to walk the fashion district for the bathing suit - still didn't find anything besides the occasionally string bikini which - NO, still no open footwear anywhere... but velour suits! And hoodies! And QUILTS.

I was about to lose it.

We never found an acceptable bathing suit but we decided on some makeshift swimwear and I did find sandals at a tag sale nearby the apartment. Mark eventually found a tiny fan for FORTY DOLLARS - and I mean the kind you put on a desk. FORTY DOLLARS. Jesus Christ.

It was about 2 1/2 days of this. I was already SO over LA. Like, wherethehellistheplaneI'llrideunderneath kind of over LA.

Then Mark brought me to a comedy show the night of the Super Moon. I wasn't expecting to have as much fun as I did, I had pictured a big place with a stage and Felicia Day (yes, my fellow nerds - Felicia Day was there) would look like an ant from where I was sitting. But it was the total opposite. It was stuffy, to be sure, but intimate. Felicia Day was like 10 feet away from me. I laughed and laughed at the hosts discussing her book and just random things. Mark said he hadn't heard me laugh so much since... jesus, when?

After that Supermoon night, it feels like everything changed. The weather got better, the entertainment was everywhere and I'm so happy Mark and I are considering moving here next year.

More later :)
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Re: Del's blog: What I did on my summer vacation...

Postby Delaney » Thu Oct 01, 2015 3:38 pm

Ahhh peace and quiet. Well, there is a baby here and a 2 year old very sweetly giggling at every little thing, so RELATIVE peace and quiet.

7 people in a 2 bedroom apartment is not ideal. At any point you may abruptly need to drop whatever you're doing and switch gears. This experience has if nothing else, thoroughly convinced me that I do not ever want to raise children. No little monsters disguised as adorable heart-string pullers for ME. 'Cause I'm telling you, these two children are freakin' CUTE, but I still only want to be around them when their mother is there.

That brings me to the next piece of my LA experience. So the overview: Mark, his mother, and I are visiting from New England. Mark's sister, Terry and her husband have two adorable children that I wish would grow up already, so the grown ups can keep their mind in one place instead of tending to their every need and desire. But overall, I really haven't had much to do with the caretaking. Mark and I have gone off on our own and been to all kinds of restaurants, beaches, boardwalks, shows, shops... a little of everything. He got us tickets to go see David Spade tonight so I'm looking forward to that. Being a grown up in LA without children is AWESOME. That probably sounds terrible to some but hey, we can't all be endowed with maternal instincts. Doesn't make me a baby eater, I just think its important to know your limitations and own them.

Anyway, I love Mark's mom. I used to live with the family for 2 1/2 years in my early 20's and she was always the kind of person I could really talk to, about almost everything. Everything had a religious bent, but at that time everything I said had a religious bent too so it didn't really matter. We lost touch a bit over the years, and its only been on this vacation that I've realized how much things have changed as compared to being in my 20's.

One thing that sticks out to me: Religion is a guilt master. Its amazing to look in from the outside and realize... that was ME. EVERYTHING is riddled with guilt. I feel terrible for Mark's mother. How does she even stand up with all that guilt weighing her down? For example, twice already this morning this is what I heard:

"I am such a dunce. I went to find Terry and saw that she had the cucumbers on the stove and then the baby cried so she had to turn it off you know? And then I turned it on and got distracted and went back into the living room. Then God told me to go back into the kitchen because I had forgotten it was on! So I go back in there and then I look for Terry in HER room, and I forgot the stove again! So when I went back and it was getting burned so I turned it off but now its ruined."

She literally blames herself for being absentminded and acts as though its also a deviation from God because she isn't LISTENING to him. WAT?

And then, she asked me if she could complain a bit. Totally acceptable; let's vent:

"My tongue is going numb on the left side. And its the way I'm sitting! I have a pinched nerve and if I don't sit properly, like in a chair, then my nerve gets pinched and my tongue goes numb. But I still don't WANT to always sit in a straight backed chair, I insist on sitting on couches and trying to lounge and then I complain because everything hurts! Its like God telling me, 'This is MY body, and I tell you how to take care of it and this is what happens when you don't listen.' And He's right! I'm lactose intolerant and I do whatever I want. I eat whatever I want and then feel like crap, I just don't listen to Him!"

WAT?

How did we go from a regular ailment to "YOU DESERVE THIS YOU SACK OF SH*T - GOD"

Also I'm becoming aware that she only sees skinny people. Now see, we had the same reservations about coming to Hollywood - is everyone going to have perfect bodies and perfect teeth and I'm going to feel like a big loser in comparison?

The answer is no. The people look like people. Mark said there were more gym-body types on the beach but I didn't notice it as any different from ANY beach. People who look good in bathing suits flock to the beach. I'm pretty sure that's a universal truth.

Anyways Mark, his mom and I are driving around and she - kind of wistfully - remarks on all the skinny people walking around. I did a scan of the area...

WAT?

"What are you talking about? I think there are more people who look like us than anything else."

"Oh... well, maybe I'm just paying attention to it."

"I think maybe you're training yourself to ONLY see people who're thinner than you. Because that has NOT been my experience so far, and I was expecting it."

"Well... I think I just like skinny people better."

That's a shit-ton of self loathing there. How does she stand it? I mean, I guess if your preference of what's 'attractive' is thin and you're not thin, I can see how that could mess with you a little. But I can't help wondering if that's really true. Like, do you really think that way or have you just been conditioned to feel that way? I think in some ways its an advantage that I'm attracted to all genders - because ever since I was a little girl, I've always felt curvy was a more interesting silhouette. I used to draw Disney princesses and the pink and yellow Rangers with voluptuous proportions. And in adult hood, its always the women with the curves that turns my head. Its not that I let that kind of preference rule my dating choices, but it does have a very real gravitational pull. So I'm thinking that makes me more than a little skeptical about that whole 'thin is the most desirable' thing.

Besides, to hear her talk about herself you'd think she's like some giant, huffing, puffing fe-fi-fo-fum thing plodding heavy-footed around threatening the villagers to feed her fat babies or ELSE!

That is my second baby-eating reference. I've been around children too much this week.

Anyways, it is also the first time I ever felt like she was a little bit........ Mother-in-Law-y. Like, a little passive aggressive towards me and she's NEVER been like that. Unless she has, but I'm only detecting it now. I can imagine that it would've gone over my head a lot in my early 20's. Like she was having a frustrating day at one point, and now keep in mind that on almost every outing or meal Mark and I went out on we've invited her or made time for her, but when we got back Mark asked what she was interested in doing the next day... would you like the 3 of us to go to the Used Bookstore? Her reply?

"Well, how about you and I go without her and we can pick up Del later!" And then she kind of slaps me on the back with this not-serious-but-seriously-though laugh and the playful slap felt like it was just a baby slap with unlimited potential.

WAT?

I mean, why wouldn't she just say, "Hey, could I spend some time alone with you Mark?" Right? Even easier right? Geesh.

Oh, AND, this is after I SCORED for her. She expressed the desire to smoke and I went on that boardwalk and GOT HER SOME, which she DID NOT pay me for by the way, and then THAT? WTF??? I WAS HELPING YOU GET RID OF YOUR HEADACHE!

And ever since the first night here, she insists on sleeping on the fouton next to Mark and we're both about 90% sure she's doing it out of religious conviction, as in, we're not married so although we live with each other anyways, it is her Kim Davis-esque responsibility to try to prevent us sleeping near each other. I don't even think she really cares except she'd feel guilty NOT doing it.

And much like Kim Davis' situation... all she's preventing is safe and comforting cuddle time. God does not follow us to the parking garage and keep me from blowing my boyfriend in the dark, thanks all the same though.

Oh well, that's enough for now. Time for a smoke.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Re: Del's blog: What I did on my summer vacation...

Postby Delaney » Tue Oct 06, 2015 1:11 am

Ohhhh my gods I hate everything, I am so depressed. I'm in New England. Everything feels so, SO wrong.

Mark and I have been singing the blues ever since we got back. He said he'd never seen anyone so desperate not to go home as I was on our last day.

On the plus side, we are seriously moving back. Like, he's looking for a job out there and I'm ready to go when he does. I've already checked out some jobs that are nothing but its okay because the point is WE NEED TO BE IN LA.

You should've seen Mark. I have never seen him so relaxed and happy. His stupid job is killing him. Yesterday, we were in the car... our sad car... and he said, "Don't you miss that feeling that you had out there? I can't think of how to say it... just that feeling of..."

"The will to live?"

"Well YES, but, its a certain feeling of..."

"Possibility? Joy? LIFE?"

Rolling out of bed and thinking about breakfast instead of fashioning a noose out of the dirty clothes pile? Picking out your favorite sundress and sunglasses to people watch instead of lying in bed, staring at a Nyquil bottle and wondering why there aren't any jobs on Monster that allow you to check out all shift?

There are so so many things I could be doing out there. Did you know they have these nights at a comic book shop where random people get together, create a story, and draw it out? Like they make a finished project. I remember being in that store with Mark, and I'm dazzled by all the beautiful art around me and I said aloud, "Why aren't I doing this? Its not even as though I can't, or it'd be a struggle... I draw well! I like to write! I could literally just step into the group and start working! Why do I not do this?"

Because I died here, I died here in New England. Land I once loved... I'm over you. Because you killed me.

Ah, Sam just called to ask if I want a steak sandwich or fries. I work with Sam. He's so nice its almost suspicious... I keep waiting for him to grow a tail and horns, or at least do something creepy and man-like, but so far, nope. Just a nice dude. Steak and fries.

Anyways, something about being in LA just feels... just feels. Feels good.

The plane ride home was dismal, made even more so by Mark's mom commenting that the picture of her daughter's 2-month old would be even cuter if she didn't look so "chubby." As in: "That's not even the cutest picture of her! She has her hand under her chin and it makes her look CHUBBY."

A 2-month old. This, about a 2-month old.

It isn't often, but sometimes life will provide us with little noises in our brain that signify the end of something. For me, it was a sound like *CLUNK!* And that, my friends, was the end of my faith in humanity. Or at least my faith in anything Beth ever says to me again.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Re: Del's blog: What I did on my summer vacation...

Postby Delaney » Tue Mar 29, 2016 1:55 am

So. Much. Crap. There has actually been sooo much that's happened since I last wrote, I don't even know where to begin. So if this particular entry seems more like an unfiltered stream of consciousness... you're right! Congrats on that, and I hope you'll be able to follow. If it starts to get too Finnegan's Wake-y, you were warned.

- My Hulk Moment: I had my first almost-fight. I'm a pretty non-violent person, as sloth is usually the trait that accompanies me to every experience, and I can still call myself non-violent because I never ended up doing much more than posturing. Still, it was kind of interesting at the time.

I can only say for myself that I had had a bad night. I hadn't slept well before my overnight shift, and then once I got to work the kids were being obnoxious, and then the morning came I got mandated to stay late and I HATE MANDATES. Not the normal mandates, like when somebody has an emergency or something - that's to be expected. But this particular site used mandates at their convenience. Someone f*cked up the schedule? Mandate! An appointment was made at a stupid time leaving us out of ratio for first shift? Mandate! Someone's late every freaking day blahblahblah... MANDATE!

Literally, EVERY DAY. I think I got out of work on time twice. Every other shift, I left anywhere from 20 minutes after my shift to a good hour.

Anyways, so I got mandated which I believe made it 14 hrs of no sleep, and this one particular kid was working my last nerve and HE KNEW IT, and I really needed nicotine. So by the time I got in my car, mentally preparing for the 45 minute drive ahead, I was pretty much spent.

So I'm driving along on the highway, and I turn on my blinker to get in the other lane. I hear a BEEP and realize I have a car in my blind spot. So move back and wave that apologetic little way you do when you're an idiot, and we all move on with our lives, right? Wrong. A couple of uneventful minutes had passed when the same car speeds up next to me. I look over and I see the girl on the passenger side throw something at my car window, duck, and then they drive off. Now at this point I didnt know wtf it was that she threw, but I was DONE. And before my brain could catch up, I felt my foot push down harder on the pedal, I saw my fingers touch the blinker to change lanes, and I FOLLOWED THEM. Now, in the back of my brain, there was a half-asleep, nicotine deprived, mentally exhausted little voice that kept trying to get my attention frantically like, "WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING GRENDAL!??" But Grendal had no idea what he was doing, he just rudely woken up and was pissed.

I got right up behind them. They changed lanes, I changed lanes. They sped up, I sped up. Then they got off an exit... and I did too.

They parked at a gas station and there we had a confrontation. It was literally the stupidest confrontation I had ever engaged in - like halfway through I had to take an honest look at myself and be like, girl chill.

I found out, by her own admission, that she had thrown a CHICKEN BONE at my car.

I can't even... :roll:

Then there was alot of "You wanna fight bitch!?" 'YOU wanna fight?" "I'll fight!" "I'll fight too!" "Then go for it!" "YOU go for it!"

Yeah, neither one of us really wanted to fight. Meanwhile the driver of the car was rooting for her friend at a very comfortable distance.

We all just stand there for a second.

"So whatchu want bitch!?" she asks in dulcet tones.

Huh.

Well.

Hadn't actually gotten that far. Stupid squeaky background voice.

But I mean, I went to all this trouble... now I wanna go home... can't back down now, so....

"YOU OWE ME AN APOLOGY!"

Nice.

Nice job, cleverpuss. Very scary.

I did not get my apology, surprisingly enough. I DID get spit on however... so all in all... that was stupid.

- So THIS is love: My relationship with Mark has hit an all-time high. When I moved in, we were dating... but there were reservations. Like, I was still missing Francisco a little, and even though I ALWAYS know Mark is first in my heart no matter what, I didn't really feel IN love with him. I worried a little bit, but then I decided to trust myself, because I knew the love was there, I just couldn't figure out how to get that feeling again.

But for once, I took my own good advice. I stopped overthinking it. I told myself, I know its there, just wait until everything aligns again.

And it started slow. It started with me wanting to make sure that when he came home I had clean dishes ready for him and a relatively clean home. And I am NOT a tidy person. I thrive on chaos (have you noticed?), and also, and probably more importantly, I DO NOT CARE.

But he cared, and since up until this point I had spent most of my time smoking like a chimney when I wasn't lying on the couch praying it would swallow me, there was alot to do. Mark had let me get away with this lazy depression and he kept the place up for months. It started to give me heart pangs to see him so stressed out, so I finally got off my ass and cleaned the place - because I love him.

As a little side note here, some of this motivation can also be attributed to my medication. It was getting bad for awhile, the depression stuff. I'm kind of always mentally settling somewhere around melancholy, so sometimes its difficult to detect in myself when its time to get some help. My typical apathy became a dependence on that stupid couch. I swear I hated leaving it. Its not even a great couch, I think its from Ikea for gods sake, but I had spent many, many hours there as soon as I got out of work, wishing I could disappear in it. Mark grew concerned, but he's not pushy, so he sweetly suggested often that I may require a doctor. I didn't think it was a problem until I read in the staff log at work that one of the kids went to crisis because she wanted to kill herself, and I thought automatically, 'I'm with ya, girl.'

It was time. I went to my doctor, I went through the motions - still am, some days, but I can say there's been some improvement. For one thing, I allowed myself to open up to Mark. And I realized that basically, I had managed to shut off whatever part of my brain that could relinquish affection to him. He's so close to me, he knows me so well, we've been together so long, that my brain kept the most vulnerable parts on the inside.

That's kind of impressive, if you think about it. I mean I know its like, not a wonderful thing to be able to do but, hey. Good on you brain. Thanks for being in my corner, I know you were trying to protect me.

- I’ve got 99 problems and you’re every one: I quit my job.

That site was bat-shit ridiculous.

Quick re-cap: After leaving my job at the ER, I took a job at the first place that would hire me. This turned out to be a job working with teens in a kind of halfway house situation. The first site was a long-term one, and it was challenging but I loved it. I had so many good times with those kids, they were honestly awesome. We had long talks, we'd go to the park and just hang out and be silly, or go shopping, or sometimes just gossip. I LOVED working with these kids.

But then Nikki got all bitchy... and John got all bitchy, and I moved in with Mark, 2 hours away from my job site. I loved those kids so much I really tried to make it work for awhile, but then I started getting write-ups because I refused to drive an extra 2 hours on my day off to go to an hour long meeting. Think about it: 2 hours there, 1 hour for a meeting that almost DEFINITELY could've been a text, and 2 hours home. That's a 5 hour chunk of my time , and I only get paid for the hour - no travel - at 11 dollars an hour which literally did not pay for the gas I spent getting there. On top of that, if my car acted funny in any way, I couldn't make it there, because I can't be stranded 2 hours away from home in the middle of nowhere at night. So very reluctantly, I transferred to another site, only 45 minutes away (ONLY :roll: ).

That site is short-term, and in a very populated area. The kids staying there also have connections in that city, so they go AWOL all the time, among other things. I didn't have any time to develop a rapport with the kids there. Too little time all around, plus I was 3rd shift so generally not a lot of bonding occurred. I didn't really like it. I mean, I liked the staff and most of the kids were alright, but it just wasn't very fulfilling because I couldn't really HELP anyone. Like at the last site the kids used to call me "the therapist" sometimes, because I was the talker. I'd come in and a kid would give me a look and say, "I need to go to the park with you Del." And I knew that meant we'd be on the grass or the swings, discussing life-altering, all important, teenager-y stuff. But it worked! I was good at my job, I was very good at de-escalation.

But I didn't have that anymore, so I was just a body.

And the bullsh*t I encountered in that place... holy sh!#. Couldn’t take it anymore.

For example, on one of my first nights there, the 2nd shift supervisor was still mucking around, and my Sammy - who will forever have a little space in my heart - was being verbally accosted by this guy accusing him of sleeping with one of the admin. He just starts running his mouth - loudly - saying, "Aw come on, I see the way Kris talk to you, I know there's something going on..." and sh!# like that but for like, EVER. Like this idiot would not shut up. At every turn Sammy's playing the artful dodger, politely denying anything of the sort and trying to get this dude off his ass, and the guy just keeps on going! In front of me, a new staff! Who does that?? And why the f*ck does this weirdo care who Sammy is or isn't sleeping with anyway? And who puts someone on blast like that!? I was sooo uncomfortable.

This was also the guy that responsible for the incident that made me want to quit. I came in one night, hoping for a quiet shift, except all hell was breaking loose on the boys floor. So several staff were upstairs dealing with that. Meanwhile, on the 2nd floor, One of the girls was having a tantrum so I was instructed to be on "5 minute checks," which basically means you stay in close proximity and keep an eye on the kid until she falls asleep. The guy who was left with me was this 2nd shift sup, Trev.

Remember how I spoke about mandates? Yeah, so if the house is all turnt up and the kids are fighting, staff aren’t supposed to leave until it is completely calm.

So going into the dark and quiet relaxation room and checking out while your other staff is off on temper-tantrum duty is really not the thing to do. If *I* had done that, I would've been in big trouble.

So he falls asleep, and one of the kids decides, "Yeah, great time for me to go AWOL." So she sneaks off. Right after she did that, I was getting up to do rounds because the other girl was asleep, so I got up and I find a bed is empty, and Trev is asleep in the g#$da$& relaxation room. I had to wake him up.

And that wasn't even the worst of it. After the incident the staff all seemed to think they had to cover for the guy, which could really only be done by blaming it all on me. Everybody started saying things like, "Oh that kid did you dirty Del." "Can't believe she did that to you Del." And I'm sitting there aghast like, SHE DIDN’T DO THIS TO ME, THAT RIP VAN WINKLE F*CKER DID THIS TO ME BY SLEEPING ON THE JOB! *I* was doing what I was instructed to do.

To make it even better, after all this, on his way out the door the asshole took my keys. Yeah. Just took 'em home. Which made it very awkward once I texted "I quit" to my boss and tried to exit the building. I got my keys back later, but only after Mark's mother had to drive me all the way to a dealer so I could get a new car key. He never even apologized, not for any of it. And he didn't get in trouble either. In fact, they changed a policy just to accommodate the cover-up.

That place is really weird with their supervisors. Like no matter what shady stuff they do or say, they never get in trouble.

But if for some reason that didn't seem shitty enough, I HAVE MORE!

Another supervisor on 2nd shift is Ralph. For some insight about Ralph, I'm going to tell you about the time he so kindly offered me food. He hardly ever worked 3 rd shift so I wasn't used to working with him yet. I didn't even really know him. He called me pet names and I thought it was kinda cute. Then he insisted that I have some of the pasta he cooked. I wasn't the least bit hungry, but he was so insistent I said yes to be polite. And at the time I was thinking, wow, what a nice guy. He's really going out of his way to be nice to me.

Then, after serving me my unwanted food, he turns in his seat with this self satisfied grin and say, "Okay Del. I forgot to tell you there's a catch. Now that I gave you food, you have to go clean the kitchen." Then he turns back to his stupid show like he had gotten away with something, which is stupid because I usually have kitchen chore anyway, and also as he was running shift, so he could've just ASKED. So I was a little peeved at him, and I put down my bowl and merely stated that now I knew he had an ulterior motive the whole time, so at least I know he isn't really as nice as I thought.

::Uncomfortable silence::

He was rude, but that was just the beginning. Throughout the night he was watching some tv show about Sparta that I guess has a lot of sexuality in it. I wasn't paying any attention so I didn't care... UNTIL HE GOT UP AND STARTED RUNNING HIS MOUTH. What he was actually saying is not something I can even post here, so suffice it to say that he lamented - loudly - about not being able to have slave girls for very nasty, rapey purposes like on the show. He just had to draw it out too, and it was so utterly offensive I was just totally caught off guard and didn't even know how to respond. My other co-worker didn't say much either.

I tried to keep it together. His offensive dialogue rolled around in my brain, making me feel sick and even a little violated. I tried to console myself by keeping in mind that I shouldn't let this idiot get to me; after all, this is the same guy who wondered out loud if they spoke English in ancient Rome.

Moron.

Yeah, sure they did, Christopher Columbus brought it over with him when he discovered Italy in 31 BCE.

I hope he gets eaten by snakes.

Shake it off Del, shake it off.

So these were my first interactions with the guy. Keep in mind this is another SUPERVISOR.

And I hate to tell you this - you might want a cig break right about now - because that's not even the tip of the iceberg.

I come in for my shift one night, months later. It's my last week. I go in hoping for a quiet, calm shift.

Psssshhhh...

I was also really happy to be coming in, because one of my favorite staff Steve, had picked up this shift with me and I really like Steve. Truth be told, I still have quite the crush on him. I miss him actually. He's just this funny, smart guy who just always made me laugh, was always respectful and friendly, and yeah, pretty adorable.

I'm getting sidetracked.

Anyway, not only were a few kids still awake but I walked right into a HUGE issue. In one of the girls' rooms stood a new 2nd shifter, and as soon as I peeked my head around the doorway all three of them looked at each and asked each other if they should tell me.

Tell me what? I ask.

And then I got to hear about how Ralph, while administering meds to the two girls - about age 15 btw - had been fondling them and rubbing up against them in the med room, where there are no cameras, and would say sexually explicit things to them. They said it had been going on for AWHILE. One of the girls knew she was leaving for a foster home soon, so she was finally brave enough to talk about it. The other was very quiet, but sadly agreed with all that was said.

Oh, but wait... THERE'S MORE!!

The newish staff member told me that Ralph had called her to the med closet earlier that night, dropped his pants, and told her to get on her knees.

You know what happened next.

Of course I reported the girls account right away, but as I was not a mandated reporter specifically for the new staff, I simply impressed upon her as much and as often as I could that she should report it and that I would be with her for support.

Then she solved that problem by talking about it in front of three staff, including Sammy, who had to record it because now she had brought it up.

One of the saddest parts of this whole thing was talking with the girls later. One in particular was taking it very hard. Then it occurred to me to ask, “Wait, you know none of this is your fault, right?”

“No I don’t!” And she threw the covers over her head.

Hmmm…

I knew if there was one thing that I had to do before I left that place, it was to get to the bottom of this. So that morning, I caught her attention before she got ready for school.

Me: [C]? Hold on a moment… what did you mean last night when you said it was your fault? Why do you think that?
[C]: ::looking down:: Because I let it happen.
Me: Okay, can you answer some questions for me? How old do you think Ralph is?
[C]: ::shrugs:: I don’t now, in his 30’s maybe.
Me: And how old are you?
[C]: 15
Me: And he’s a staff right? A supervisor actually. So he tells you what to do, he can get you in trouble, give you consequences… he’s in a position of power right?
[C]: Yes.
Me: But you’re not, are you? No, you’re a kid stuck in a program. You have no family here to protect you… you pretty much have to rely on staff huh?
[C]: So Ralph, what he did… that’s a pretty huge abuse of power isn’t it? He’s an authority figure, and he used that to his advantage. Because that’s what predators do. They come to places like this, seek out vulnerable girls with sexual abuse history, so that they can shame you into thinking it must be your fault, because it keeps happening. But it happens because they target people. He targeted [staff member]! She has the same history. It’s not your fault. He’s a predator, and you’re a child, no matter how smart and mature you are. Are you starting to see why its so important that you know its not your fault?
[C]: Yeah…
Me: And you did the right thing. Because you didn’t stay silent. He couldn’t shame you into that. And because you spoke up, you may have just saved a bunch of future girls from becoming victims.

The rest of the morning was peppered with more check-in questions… I wanted it to get through before the program whisked her away to anonymity. I think it worked. I hope it worked. That wasn’t something I had time to rehearse.


Later, during the investigation, our Admin tried to tell us that we shouldn’t have written down the staff allegations because it wasn’t pertinent to the job… I think its worth inserting here that we were told to record every move we made on shift, including going to the bathroom. But sexual assault allegations that involve staff – nah, not important.

Then there was the waiting… I really didn’t trust our Admin to take of these things, I can only say that I am relieved that the girls at least were removed from the situation, but as they both stated that Admin had said they didn’t believe either one of them, it was a little like getting rid of the evidence. Last I heard, they had merely transferred Ralph, in true Catholic scandal spirit.

Don’t worry, it didn’t just end there. I believe I was right that they would do an inadequate job with this, but luckily there are other ways to get things done.

But wait peeps, just in case you haven’t gotten a full understanding of my hate for the place – THERE’S MORE!

Kind of the icing on the icky, dirty, predatory cake.

To add insult to injury: Bedbugs. Children waking up for school to discover big welts all over them from BEDBUGS. As staff, we reported over and over and kept asking what they were gonna do about it. Even *I got several bites along my right arm, which are still healing. At the time of my leaving, they still had done nothing about it. I’ll have to go to Sam for updates.

Now, is it really any wonder that I couldn’t wait to leave? Honestly the only saving grace I had was Sam. I miss Sam. He still has a toe in my life but it isn’t the same.

And then Steve. Steve got a new job awhile ago, so you would think I could stop missing him now. But he was special to me, and on nights like this when everybody’s asleep and its quiet, my mind will wander and I find myself in pleasant little what-if train of thought. Then I remember that in all likelihood I’ll probably never see him again. I’ll just be reduced to facebook stalking forever.

Ugh. That’s just painful AND pathetic. Gotta get these feels off me. COME ON BRAIN! DO YOUR JOB! YOU’VE DONE IT BEFORE!

And Sammy. I don’t think I’ll ever meet another person like Sam again, let alone as a co-worker. The greatest thing about Sam was that he always put me at ease. It was like he could read me. And no matter what embarrassing thing I did I need had to feel insecure about it. Geez, even giving me driving directions. Knowing Sam is like having a big brother who’s always good to you. He never sexualized me, never hit on me, never made me feel stupid even if I did do something stupid. That was nice. I don’t think he could ever know how much that means to me.

- A Good Note: Let’s end this monstrosity on a good note.

Guess what? My son loves me :-D

Mark and I had been planning a trip to go see my boys in December, so naturally the day of we got all the wrapped gifts in the back, straightened our nice outfits we picked just for the occasion (well, I did anyway), sat down, turned on the engine and… nothing.

Mercury in Retrograde started that day. I believe it was the 5th. And it was after our vehicles. My Nissan died promptly after Mark put about 2,000 dollars into it. His car was unsalvagable, so we spent the next weeks trying to figure all that out. When we finally got everything settled, we made it to my boys just in time for Valentine’s Day.

And it was the time. This was the One, The Visit. My oldest asked about his birthfather.

I still can’t even remember what I told him. He already had it fixed in his mind that he was some kind of douchebag.

Well… he’s not WRONG…

I tried to be as diplomatic as possible. His adoptive Dad said I did great, that I said the perfect thing, but my head was spinning trying to find the right things to say…

I’ve rehearsed that conversation hundreds of hundreds of times to myself, but it didn’t make it any easier.

But my Zach was so happy I was there. He insisted I go to his birthday party in the summer, gave me hugs (he’s not really a hugger), and I just felt so… loved. And as a birthparent, you know, there’s always that risk. That maybe your child will hate you for your bad choices and for not being there the way you wished you could have. But he didn’t. He loves me :-D He said so :D
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Delaney
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Re: Del's blog: Pest Problems

Postby Delaney » Sat Apr 30, 2016 5:02 am

It's almost May and the shelter is about to close for the season. I'm going to miss so much about working here.

For one thing, its pretty great working for someone who knows you personally already. Rebekah and Sarah are sisters and my Executive Director and manager. It is a little weird considering that one of our most notable memories are the cops showing up to their families' empty house and discovering I had left a baggy of illegal herbal goodness out in the open in their nice, Christ centered home.

That was a fun memory. Cops still intimidate the begeesus out of me, as well as their parents.

But so far its really worked out. I LOVE working with this population too... I mean, so many awesome, unique personalities. Honestly, this is the quietest night we've had here on my shift. Usually I have a lot of company. People will wake up in the middle of the night for the bathroom, or because they're hungry, or can't sleep due to the symphonic snoring that so often occurs, and we'll chat. I've met writers, college grads, former business owners, transgendered people, black, white, every color on the rainbow, war vets, car mechanics, schizophrenics, alcoholics and those who've gotten clean and are trying to repair the bridges that burned.

I like it because I have been starting to feel as though I just meet the same people, every day. In every place I go -more of the same.

And is it just me, or is there just like, NO emphasis in our society for promoting personal exploration and growth? Am I just getting old? Have 20-somethings always been this infuriatingly stupid? Does ANYBODY pay attention to the ACTUAL WORDS being said or have we streamlined our attention span to make interpretations based on likely variables, like some kind of App that hijacks conversation?

It probably doesn't help that its Election year. Goddamnit, I hate election years.

And this year - Donald Trump.

Just... Donald Trump.

I honestly thought it was a joke at first.

I'm still hoping it is.

Makes a girl miss John McCain... I mean, I didn't end up voting for him because he went all Bush-y but still, at least the man has class.

I got a little off topic.

Anyway, I love my job, the people I get to interact with, and the closing of the season is making me very sad.

By the way, one of the most surprising things you learn about working in a homeless shelter is wildly unpopular. I heard that the town's local police kind of hate us, which I didn't understand because, hey, we're getting the drunks off the street for them right? Of course I quickly learned that some of our most endearing folks really love giving the cops a hard time... soooo for that stuff, its understandable. Cops are busy, and several calls over the year for help with a guest's drunken rages get a little ridiculous. Also, its not all the cops, we actually have some really nice ones who just come once in awhile to make sure everybody's okay. The support is wonderful except now the local PD is putting pressure on us to make it a 'dry' shelter, or behavior based shelter. One of the reasons this is such a good place for our guests is that no matter what state of sobriety they may or may not be in, they can safely sleep here for the night. That means fewer people dying in the cold, or of overdoses (which has happened - we check everyone for drugs or weapons but obviously, it can't be too invasive), and our staff being able to help people stay alive and healthy. A lot of our guests have been clean the whole time or most of the time, some of them have jobs.

And some, like my personal favorite who I will simply call Stevenson, have maybe a year to live due to cancer, are blind, and have absolutely no reason to get sober at all. I can't really blame him.

He is also the one guest who relishes giving our cops a hard time - because zero f*cks left.

He's not here tonight. I'm worried about him. He calls me Princess and says he's going to marry me everytime I see him. He picks Daffodils from the church yard (yeah, not technically allowed - zero f*cks left) and gives them to me. He has cried in my arms, he has devastated me with his impossible situation, and now the shelter is closing, and I don't know what's going to happen to him.

Sidetracked again.

So yeah, wildly unpopular. But a wildly unpopular job to people who like, don't have any connection with the place at all. Its the drug thing, it has to be. And I can accept that there are many people who HAVE been personally affected by the addicts in their lives and still hold a lot of scars and even some grudges, but to be like SHAMING a person who cares about addicts is absolutely nuts to me. I mean there is serious derision, like 'let addicts die' derision. And if it isn't that tack its simply a 'who do you think you are' attitude often followed with "you're not saving anyone."

Yup, I know. Not trying to save, trying to help. And since when is wanting to help become such a bad thing anyway? You know, its not like I'm going to graduate from med school anytime soon, or get bitten by a radio-active spider. Hell, my anxiety and limitations don't even bow to let me complete an EMT program at community college. But I can DO this. I'm GOOD at this. I'm good at loving people who desperately need it. Why is this such a point of contention for some people?

Luckily, I am quite comfortable being unpopular so it isn't really an issue. But I still hate the idea that some have such a low opinion of the people who stay here. THAT bothers me.

I noticed that when it comes to loving who you work for - my friends and the guests - the work is something I very cheerily take on. I turn into a motivated employee, showing up early, picking up shifts, extra laundry, scrubbing the showers, laying extra food out, re-organizing our storage, looking up jobs for people, giving references...

And now I'll have to wait until for freaking ever to be able to do this again. Plus I don't even live out this way anymore so its not like I can go to the usual haunts during daytime and check up on anybody.

Well, I had more to write but its almost 6a. That means I have about an hour to finish up all those little loose ends.

But I will leave you with a link to my blog post for my job. *NOTE* As per usual, I wrote it in a flurry during a slow night, submitted the first draft to my boss, and it was published before I had a chance to edit it properly. But its a blog post, not national news, and if I've learned anything from reading local authors on news sites, its that few but the kind of people who would participate on a writing website will know the difference anyway. Also, I didn't title it *shrug*

(No seriously. I read something by a news author (local), and it appears that grammar, spelling and just general VOICE are like, mere suggestions.)

Anyway, here's the link: https://t.co/spBrzLb3CJ
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Delaney
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Re: Del's blog: Pest Problems

Postby Delaney » Wed Aug 03, 2016 11:09 am

Guess what my new job is??

You'll never guess....

Babysitting!!

Yeah, I know. In a twist of fate that clearly demonstrates the gods orchestrating this thing have run out of fresh material, my life is on repeat again. Summer job - babysitter. Just like when I was 12.

Wanna know how this happened? Well, it partially started after the shelter closed for the season, my boss - and friend - Rebekah pissed me off (I found her approach needlessly condescending) - so I wasn't even sure I'd be invited to return to the shelter come November. I was plenty sad about that, but I found a PCA job within a week, and I thought it was a keeper.

It was a private care job for a little old lady we'll call Hannah. Here was my job description when I started: assist with daily routines, OCCASIONALLY drive Hannah for errands or even just a nice time out, pick up medications, make food, assist with showering and provide company.

Here's what the job turned into: Shopping. Shopping... shopping... shopping... Shopping at Ocean State Job Lot, shopping at Big Lots, shopping at BigY, shopping at Stop 'N Shop, shopping at the mall, shopping at tag sales, estate sales, shopping shopping shopping.

I quickly discovered that most of what Hannah wanted turned out to be a ride to wherever she wanted. After a few weeks she refused to DO anything else but go shopping, and considering the wear and tear on my little 98 Toyota, it was getting to the point where working was COSTING me money. And did I mention I didn't get paid gas mileage? Oh, and the temper tantrums. I can't even describe. My hours were supposed to be 930a-330p, but I hardly ever left before 530. She'd yell. Then I'd get stuck in an hours worth of traffic on top of my 45 min drive home, and at the end of 3 months, I was done.

I tried working things out with Hannah, and she would agree, but then she'd revert right back to this needless shopping thing. I swear it was bordering on addiction. I mean, I felt for her because what else did she have left? But still as a PCA, I was supposed to get stuff, like, done. Her house was a disaster, but she wouldn't let me clean anything except the floors and dishes. Her house was PACKED with just... stuff. Stuff everywhere. A few nods shy of a TLC episode. That was supposed to be one of our projects. Things just got worse and several times I tried to contact the girl who hired me. Then one time while I was sneakily cleaning, I found a big stack of hiring forms. All dating from January, which is when she lost her license and started looking for a driver I guess.

4 PCA's since January. FOUR.

And the girl who hired me STILL hasn't called back. STILL. I don't even work there anymore.

I finally told Hannah I had to quit. She was mad at me, but seriously, I just couldn't afford it and without ANYONE to help me problem solve this situation there was little I could do about it. She has visiting nurses and is very ambulatory and cognitive (she hadn't always had a PCA) so I knew she'd be okay. I offered to drop by sometimes until someone else was hired but again, I heard nothing from the girl who hired me.

So for about 2 weeks I was pretty bored. I am really not good at being unemployed. Usually just translates into day drinking and spiraling into a hermit-like intoxicated existence. I made my deck my chill-out area for the summer, and I would spend waaayyy too much time out there. It was just such a perfect vantage point for watching stuff. Like, this one woman in our apartment complex, she walks her cat. Harness and everything. She just walks around with her phone in one hand and her fat cat by a leash in the other.

And then the weird part was, she would always take the cat in the laundry room, for like 20 minutes! (I timed her.) And I kept thinking, what the hell does she do in there? Let the fat cat roll around in people's laundry baskets? Stuff him in the dryer? If I could only SEE better into that room...

But wait! Mark has binoculars! Where did he put them again?? The closet! Yes! It was supposed to let me see the stars better but, hey, this'll do...

I almost got out the door before I realized, Holy sh*t I need a job. This is a new low. I'm PEEPING on the CAT LADY. I'm sure how much farther a person can sink.

Thankfully, I had plans with my bestie for a road trip, so alot of socialization, new areas to explore, and lots to catch up on with Rachel.

I'm gonna throw in a 'character list' for you guys because although I've talked about Rachel, Dan, and Rebekah before, its been awhile since we all reconnected.

Rachel and I met as teenagers and became close, mostly through church functions. We actually had a few instances in our childhood where some of our Homeschool activities overlapped, but we didn't realize that until later. She ended up marrying our mutual friend Dan, whom we both met at a different church/youth group in our later teens. In our late teens/early 20s, can't exactly remember the ages, Dan became engaged to a girl named Mary, who was Rachel's best friend at the time. The engagement didn't stick because Dan moved away right after to Florida, supposedly to find work, but also barely contacted Mary until she finally ended it in an email. Rachel always thought that was a terrible way to break up with someone, and I would normally agree except that Dan left her first, and by the time she finally decided to officially end it everybody kinda knew he wasn't gonna marry her anyway. Honestly, I thought the approach was totally justified considering the situation. Anyways, Mary told Rachel she could date Dan if she wanted, and Rachel dated the hell out of that boy and then married him. They moved alot, but lived in Ohio for a number of years, one of which I was present for. Actually it wasn't even a full year, probably not even 6 months. That same year Rachel and I both became pregnant - she with her first and myself with my Cam Cam. Everything kinda went to hell there for awhile so we didn't talk too much.

Rebekah is Rachel's little sister, and also currently my boss at the shelter where I HAVE been invited back to, I'm happy to say, but more about that later. The first time I set eyes on Rebekah she was at our youth group, shyly standing next to a table of desserts, close to where Rachel was chatting animatedly to a bunch of us, which was something she was always kind of known for. Rachel could talk to anybody - grown-ups, older teens, 'cool' kids... and if you wanted to have any social standing at all a good place to be was near Rachel. Our little loser group needed her as close as possible to take advantage of the popularity and perks of being her friend, and we had to do it sneakily lest she realize we weren't a group of friends so much as the leftovers nobody else would talk to.

So there stood Rebekah, or Becky as I'm more used to calling her, watching me scarf down chocolate chip cookies. I praised them for being so good, and she finally spoke up to tell me she had made them. From then on we she was a part of the group.

I'm sorry, I mean, I probably didn't see it as so Machiavellian at the time, but a very real motivation for friend selection is what they can do for me. In my defense... she still makes really amazing cookies.

Sorry.

No, I know its mean. I just lose interest in most people. It isn't on purpose, and I think one of the reasons Rebekah and I stayed in contact over the years, even just a little, is because she is genuinely likable and sweet. And she'd bright, so if you can pull her out of her shell a little bit you can have decent conversations with her. I found that to be a rare occurrence with our other friends.

Like Sherry. Sherry and I met in kindergarten. She was nice enough but... dumb... really dumb... still is... and for some reason used to get all angry when I corrected some of her words... like "Brung." ::shudder:: I am definitely going to describe more about her later but for now... just trust me. She's not learning disabled in any way but just... REALLY content with being an idiot. She spells her own vocation wrong. I really can't believe she finished any kind of education, let alone one where she has to counsel people.

Still, she had a trampoline, and a hot older cousin named Robbie who smoked and I used to wait for him when Sherry went to sleep.

But mostly it was about the trampoline. When it broke I stopped coming over.

Then Becky with the cookies, but also Becky because it seemed like she needed friends. Her sister to this day gets all the attention. Becky needed friends and deep down I knew she belonged in our loser group. So we kept her close. That was enough for me. We all needed friends and were hopelessly awkward, but she wasn't as good at hiding it, and she was generally the nicest. You just can't overlook a person like that.

Rachel, popularity at first... but honestly she is just really f*cking entertaining. Big ball of personality and it makes boredom difficult. I suppose that's why I never truly got sick of her.

And there was Theresa, or Terry, who was actually the linchpin for this little history, and also the reason I met Mark, as he is her brother. But Terry stopped talking to me one day and honestly never started again... I always feel this obligation when I'm around her to try to be super charming and funny so she'll talk to me again, but no. Whatever grudge she developed, it stuck into adulthood. I personally don't feel like we're friends at all, even when Mark and I went to visit her in Cali, we all just did our own thing. No reason to pretend we like each other. We just can't get away because I'm so close to Mark and used to be close to her other family members as well, even after she stopped talking to me.

Ever since I met Nikki last year, when everything fell apart spectacularly, I kept thinking of Theresa. Like, Goddammit! Same g#$da$& thing! SOMETHING ON YOUR MIND LITTLE MISS PASSIVE-AGRESSIVE?? No? Then quit being weird to me or go away. For real though. AND they're both Tauruses. g#$da$& Taurus. I can never get along with them. Scarecrow was a Taurus too, and when I wasn't f*cking him I was hating him a little. I just can't read a Taurus.

Oh, and last but not least in our loser group was Jessica.

Dumbest.

Person.

On.

Earth.

And just grating... really grating. We don't talk anymore either but its because I got tired of hearing about how women need to be submissive to their husbands and such.

Gross.

So I tangeted a little there. Did any of you actually read that whole thing? No? I don't blame you.

Anyways so back to how I got into babysitting - I had quit my job and was embarking on this road trip with Rachel. She was separated from Dan because long story short, they got their kids taken away and put in a foster home for a year. At first they were trying to reunite the family but it finally became evident that Dan was not in a healthy way and hadn't been for a long time. Even when I lived with them - before children - I moved out pretty soon because while Dan is often funny and smart, he is also manipulative and stopped taking care of himself in a big way. This got progressively worse as the kids came along, and pretty soon Rachel was working two jobs and getting reports about neglect of the kids while she was gone.

And this is where I came in. Rachel had started talking to me more and more throughout the ordeal, and I don't wanna get into it, but she called me in tears and after about an hour, I convinced her it was time to divorce Dan.

Which is kind of morbidly funny... 'cuz while I lived with them that dumb friend of ours Jessica, used to warn Rachel that I was gonna sleep with Dan (I didn't). We all thought it so comical that we nicknamed me "Homewrecker."

I didn't realize at the time that it was a prophesy.

Which brought us to the road trip. It was the final trip she would have to make back to Ohio to finalize everything and stay in New England with her kids for good. And as I had spoken of my employment troubles, she called Becky while we were driving, and they both asked if I could babysit until the kids go to school, and then work at the shelter office until November, when the shelter would resume normal staffing.

So my answer was basically "f#$% YEAH!"
So now I am a babysitter for the summer.

Our road trip was fantastic. I hadn't been with RACHEL Rachel in such a long time, we just didn't run out of things to say. When I lived with Rachel and Dan, before kids, it was still different. Dan was very manipulative of Rachel and Rachel did little to resist those tactics anyway. That was possibly the most frustrating. No matter what Dan said or did, no matter how many people would try to get her to see that she was been controlled and terrorized by Dan's incessant demands, she remained in denial.

She reminded me the other day that I once told her on a ride to work that she had Stockholm syndrome. At first I couldn't believe I would have said that, but yeah, then came the distant memory. I said that to her and then wondered why we stopped talking :roll:

Traveling was awesome but then came the worries. This was supposed to be her last trip to Ohio so alot was riding on everything going right. Unfortunately, Dan is not always the most cooperative man in the world and sure enough, right before we were going to settle in and rest at a friend's house, Rachel received a text from Dan. Something like, "I lied. I didn't get the class done."

See, when they got their kids taken away one of the conditions for their divorce (still don't really understand why it affected the divorce, but whatever... its Ohio) was to complete a parenting class. Rachel completed hers, and Dan had the option of doing it online but he'd have to pay. He didn't go to the free class so here we were, the day before court, and Dan was already sabotaging the thing.

Rachel wasn't having with that though, so we met him at a McDonald's, she paid to have him take the test and made sure he got all the right answers.

First crisis averted.

It was strange seeing Dan again. Part of me wanted to pick right up where we had left off. The funny thing about living with Rachel and Dan years ago is that I actually got along really well with him alot of the time. Well, there was that time when I was in the hospital, but we can revisit that later. Before everything started to turn to absolute sh*t Dan was often really awesome to me as a friend. And he was far less manipulative - I mean duh, we weren't in love or anything so the seeds of manipulation were rarely sowed and definitely not tended. We'd go out on "Urban Explorations" (exploring abandoned areas), we'd put vodka and Coke in Starbucks cups and walk around talking about everything - but mostly sex - and when Rachel became pregnant we were often each other's solace from her hormonal bat sh*t crazy whim of the day. Like one time she told us we weren't allowed to drink anymore. Why? we asked. Does it make you feel left out? No, she replied. She just decided we shouldn't do it. Another time she became convinced that since I had started diddling the neighbor, I would go after Dan as well. This well after Dan and I had already developed a routine where we were alone and drunk together several times a week. It was never gonna happen. If it was, it already would have. But then I started to realize that the biggest impediment to Rachel's happiness was having another girl in the house. A long time after, I asked why she had wanted me to move in in the first place. And I quote, "Because I thought you would be my biggest problem."

Nice right? But at least she was honest, and it made perfect sense once I saw how problematic their relationship had become. A distraction is what she wanted, and with my talent and f*cking up everything I set my hands to I bet she thought hating on me would bring she and Dan closer. But as we know now, that plan kind of backfired for her.

I need to throw in here a word about Dan, because since she decided to leave him for good, I realized that I had to pick a side. I wanted to be diplomatic but I was also angry at how long the emotional and mental abuse had gone on, and Rachel needed me more. So to be honest you're gonna read alot of bad things about Dan. But it wouldn't be fair to demonize him without some explanation as to how he became THIS Dan.

Dan is a very intelligent, very broken man. He had a traumatic childhood, was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia (I spelled it right! the first try!), and had little to no support as he grew up. To make matters worse, according to him he had been possibly misdiagnosed and now he's being treated for Borderline Personality Disorder. I asked Rachel how in gods name he didn't get an ASD dx like their two oldest children, as that seemed pretty obvious to me, and Rachel said it was suspected but that doctors don't dx Autsim in adults.

Totally forgot about that. I think that's awful though, I mean its not like it goes away. As an adult you still have to deal with it and its... comforting... to be able to understand why your brain works differently from everyone else. Also, even though there still aren’t really therapies for adults, just knowing more about yourself helps you have perspective.

But what the hell do I know.

Anyways, what you need to know about Dan is that his method of survival in this world is manipulation and avoidance of things even I would consider simple. I’m also pretty sure he’s been depressed for like, ever, and has not evolved his ways of dealing with it. So when I tell you certain things about him, like how he treated Rachel, and the neglect of their kids… well, remember even ‘villains’ have a backstory. You’re walking in on a very bad chapter.

So considering everything I knew about him, even then part of me wanted to have a cig and a drink and catch up with him. I resisted this. Before I set eyes on him again I felt no inclination to do this, he was totally hateable to me, but in person it was more difficult. Still, I had chosen a side, and Rachel and I had a mission: get the girl DIVORCED.

The next morning we picked Dan up to go to the courthouse. Again, it felt weird, like we were all just supposed to be getting coffee or something and hang out. But Rachel barely spoke to him and was snippy, and as loyal friend my job was to support her in her anger. I was cordial, but tried not to be too friendly.

Of course… then something happened.

Rachel once said, “If something is going to happen, it’s going to happen to one of us.”

She was right, and I forgot that now we were all in close proximity to each other, SOMETHING stupid HAD to happen. It happened to me.

We got to the courthouse and started the routine. We went through the metal detectors and I confidently put my purse on the conveyor belt thingy, totally assured I everything of mine would go through without a blip. I even mentally judged Dan for wearing his metal goth chains thinking, ha, STILL not an adult, huh. Showing up to court looking like a mallrat.

And then I got stopped. “Something’s in here,” the guy said, and I wasn’t supposed to move. “Oh my god,” I thought. “What could it possibly be? I don’t carry weapons… I don’t think I have any metal in there...”

And the officer turned my purse to the side and pulled out… my pipe.

My brand new, oh-so-proud-of-the-pretty-pink-colors glass pipe. With a teeny tiny bit of Marijuana left in it too. Bonus.

And I’m just watching the guy speechless, my brain slowly waking up to the realization that I had drug paraphernalia in an Ohio courthouse, and screaming nononononononononononononononononononono...

I was in shock. How, HOW could I have forgotten I PUT MY PIPE IN MY PURSE. SERIOUSLY!? What f*cking adult does THAT Del!??

Everybody in line was looking at me. I looked back at Dan and Rachel, both with eyes and mouths wide.

“Go! GO GET DIVORCED!!” I ordered them, in the same style you might see in a very dramatic movie where the fallen actor screams “LEAVE ME BEHIND! SAVE YOURSELVES!!”

I turned back to the officer and he was calling someone else over, and then I said the WORST possible thing you could say when an officer discovers your marijuana pipe.

“I FORGOT!”

Yup. That was my defense.

I wasn’t even high at the time. Ugh…

The lady behind me in line started chuckling.

“You FORGOT, right?” she said while passing me.

Yeah yeah, har har har.

Another officer came over, picked up my pipe and scowled at the first guy. I don’t think he even looked at me.

“THIS is why you called me over?” he scoffed, and shook his head and left.

I was still frozen -literally with my hands up in anticipation of a firing squad or something- and then a guy in line started muttering that I could probably go, it was okay. Brain did not compute this information however, until the first officer lazily turned to me and said, “You’re fine,” and waved me away.

Oh.

Okay.

And I’m looking, and my pipe is still there. They didn’t even confiscate it. So there was this moment of… ‘can… can I take it? Maybe I should just run away… but… um… can I...’

I decided asking would be the next stupidest thing I could possibly do so I snatched it, put it BACK in my purse and sprinted away.

Chuckles and the guy in line behind me were really nice and brought me to the elevators to find my friends and help them get divorced. Once I was reunited it happened again: we were giggling and now that we were relieved, discussed how inevitable it was that something absurd WOULD happen at a place like this on a day like today.

We got to the 6th floor and now the focus was back on Rachel. She was afraid something would go wrong, that it wouldn’t happen and she’d be stuck in a cycle forever. I told her it would happen. It HAD to happen.

“How am I a Christian, but YOU have faith right now,” she asked.

And my answer was that there were a myriad of opportunities for sabotage of this plan, and we had just witnessed a potential one, but so far… everything is okay. This is supposed to happen today. The cycle will end.

They got their dissolution of marriage.

We dropped Dan off at his new job and Rachel and I celebrated that night with some friends of hers that she was leaving behind. It was a great night, a great trip, and I at least have one of my friends back.

I hadn’t realized how lonely I was before hanging out with Rachel and Rebekah again. I’m so used to being alone sometimes in my own world that its easy to forget that at certain periods of my life, some of my best memories were created with people I had since written off. And those memories create my happiest daydreams, the little worlds I collapse into whenever it is quiet. So even if it doesn’t last very long, you know, because of my talent for screwing up things, it is still an investment into one of those worlds.
Last edited by Delaney on Wed Aug 03, 2016 11:12 am, edited 4 times in total.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Delaney
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Re: Del's blog: The Babysitter's club...

Postby Delaney » Sat Jan 07, 2017 1:37 pm

Well, its 2017 everyone, in case you haven't been waiting impatiently and counting down the days until 2016 expired like I was, and didn't notice.

Farewell, non-friendly year. Burn like the chaff you are.

2016 was a trainwreck for just about everyone it seems, but I am a bit hopeful for 2017. One of the things that keeps me hopeful is the relationship with my boys, especially Zach. He's 12 now, and has been asking Mark and I to visit more often, and its been great to get to know him better. I was invited to Christmas for the first time in 2016, and it was an amazing event. We traveled over there Christmas Eve, partied with the extended family, and then slept in my youngest's room (Cam), so when Cam discovered the presents downstairs he jumped on the bed to wake me - "Auntie Del! Auntie Del! SANTA CAME! SANTA CAME!"

We all rushed down to see the beautiful display, everything all lit up and scores of presents by the tree. The kids tore into their presents so quick. And they even got Mark and I gifts, which we did not expect but probably should have.

I learned that my little boys are basically total badasses. My little one, well, he's 8 but he's even little for an 8-yr-old. His birthdad was kind of average build but not very tall, and nor am I, so little Cam is well, little. But that doesn't set him back. Zach reveled in telling me about Cam's encounter with a bully at school. Some kid two grades older than him started picking on him. Cam ignored it. Then he pushed him, and Cam said, "Stop! Or I'll hit you!"

So the douchebag pushes him again.

Cam punched him in the face, giving the other kid a black eye.

Well, he warned him...

Zac also had a story of heroics to tell: Some kid was teasing him and his friends, and after trying to dissolve the situation (yes, he tried to mediate first - makes me proud :-D ) unsuccessfully - you guessed it- punched him in the face.

He got 1 day in-school suspension, the other kid got a week suspension for stirring sh!# up.

I know I shouldn't be TOO proud about these vigilante tendencies... but who am I kidding? I totally am. Don't pick on my kids 'cause they punch BACK! Hehehe...

Zach also told me his favorite subject in school is Science, which makes me incredibly happy. He says its hard though, but I told him as long as he likes it to just stick with it, regardless of grades. The important thing is to try and stick with it. Science is important.

It was a really lovely time. I felt loved and welcomed and it was literally the best holiday I've had since I was a kid. Christmas, for one year at least, was magical again.

And then we took a sharp turn back to the normal comings and goings of a Del holiday - and I found myself ticking away the hours until they were over again.

One of the stipulations for having an extended holiday this year was that I also had to agree to see Mark's family. Last year I didn't go. I stayed home and drank wine and was perfectly happy about it. I'm sure I have mentioned before, that Mark's mother is doing that bitchy mother-in-law behavior, which wouldn't be so upsetting except that she never used to treat me like that before. Only after her husband died did she suddenly start treating me like something that needed to be pruned off the family tree. And I know alot of this is possibly misplaced grief, loneliness etc... I have sympathy for that. I loved her husband John, and not in some weird way. He was just like, always a perfect father figure to me. I always felt loved when he was around, he would always ask about my kids and how I am and on several occasions posed as my father to scare off riffraff. He was the first person, after my parents divorced when I was 14 and the revelation of our abusive household became apparent, to say that he felt terrible and if he had known, he would've done something. And I knew he would. I have often wondered if people knew more than they let on about what happened during that period... had they said anything? Why not? Were we that good of actors? Its occurred to me since that perhaps some people did mention something... once in awhile my Dad would suddenly stop being friends with people with no explanation. For all I know, they did try to say something - if they saw anything, that is. And I mean, we were fairly well trained. Presentation was always very important, and John wasn't really involved with my parents that much so I knew without a doubt he was completely genuine in his ignorance. I loved that man. Still tear up when I think about him. I mean, I don't even miss my OWN parents, but I miss him all the time. Just a really really good man.

But back to Mark's mom, Beth. Around December I FINALLY persuaded Mark to drive an hr with me to his mom's house, because she's storing some of my stuff in her basement. My glasses accidentally got packed with that stuff, so literally over a year I have been begging Mark to go with me. I also knew his mom missed him, but Mark flat out refused everytime. Had a hissy-fit even. He.Did.Not.Want.To.Go! Well, now I finally got him over there and as we were there anyway, Mark treated me, his mom and brother to lunch.

As usual in the company of those who hate me but I am forced to associate with, I over-compensated with hyper-friendliness. Mark as usual could not be counted on to carry the conversation. My spectrum-laden boyfriend instead mostly glared at his phone while his mom tried to get his attention. Then right as were all finishing up our lunches, Beth pops out with some snarky remark. She says something to Mark like, "Well its so nice to finally see you, now that Del has decided not to keep you from me."

Oh, I'm not kidding.

I'm sitting there stunned. Like, 1. I'M RIGHT F*CKING HERE. 2. MARK is the one that has been refusing to see her and 3. I'M the one who convinced him to show up that day in the first place!

I got confrontational and said number 3, she said, 'Uh-huh... oh...oh..." in disbelief. Mark stared at his phone.

I was pissed. I literally have done nothing to deserve this weird resentment from her. Although she also alluded to the opinion that I had some influence in Mark's atheism. This is untrue as well.

I remember when I first started researching evolution and reading Richard Dawkins, and I had called Mark, absolutely stunned at what I was learning - all that other stuff I grew up with is total bullsh*t! Can you believe it? I asked him at the time.

And very nonchalantly, he said, 'Oh yeah, I know. I never believed that crap.' It was a startling declaration, because Mark had always, when we were teenagers, just played along. He never embraced the Jesus-freak thing but as everybody else in his life were very into it, he just let live and didn't let on until I didn't believe it anymore, and then he confessed to never having believed any of it in the first place.

So again, NOT my bad. Beth made it clear she didn't see it this way though, and went so far as to tell me that when "Your life is going bad, that's God trying to get you to come back to him. You keep running away but he'll just keep putting obstacle after obstacle in front of you until you embrace him again. He loves you that much."

I'm sitting there like... this is supposed to sway me back to some imaginary a$$hole? You're telling me he's gonna TERRORIZE me until he wears me down into worshiping him? Why the ever-loving f*ck would I worship a douchebag like that? F*ck that, I wouldn't even DATE God.

I'd have him arrested.

I didn't say any of that because I was trying to be polite, but holy sh*t.

Anyways, after Beth's little outbursts I was beside myself angry. But then I started thinking that she must be lonely without John, and obviously a little bitter too. So instead of wiping her out of my company for as long as possible a.k.a. my usual tact - I thought I'd try some thing else. I'd reach out.

So my method of reaching out was to help her clean her home for the holidays. Her daughter and her family were coming to stay with them, and there was really no one to help her clean, she didn't have alot of energy, so I offered to come over during her work hours and clean and decorate for the holidays. I came over twice, and altogether probably spent about 8 - 10 hours cleaning. I washed dishes, I scrubbed table tops, I swept and vacuumed floors, couch cushions, I scrubbed the bathroom shower until it gleamed, I put decorations everywhere, I CLEANED THE WALLS. The WALLS. By myself.

Beth was nice and thanked me and made it clear she was tired and wanted me to leave. Politely.

And I'm driving away and I'm like, whatever. I did my best and at least Beth's grandkids are less likely to swallow a giant cat hairball, so, all in all I considered it a job well done.

Notice Mark did not participate. Because he doesn't like visiting his mother. Not because of me.

Fast forward to Christmas and I'm thinking we're on friendlier terms. Now this is just after my FANTASTIC Christmas with my sons, and the difference in atmosphere was stark.

We arrive, everybody is just sitting around, Theresa hasn't shown up yet, I'm tired... and then Beth stumbles out from her nap.

She looks at me. "Oh, you're here... where's Mark."

"Upstairs bathroom. Merry Christmas."

"Oh, yeah, Merry Christmas."

So at first everything is cordial.

When we're leaving - and there were a few awkward and confusing moments in between - we're giving our last goodbyes and I mention to Beth I'd be happy to come over again sometime to clean if she wants.

She says, all sarcasm: "Suurre... SOMEday."

:evil:
:evil:
:evil:

Biiitch...

I'm looking over at Mark like, did you catch that motherf*cker? Because Mark is always busy not paying attention, and suffers from a certain conviction that the female members of his family are incapable of being bitchy. This is really annoying when you're the one being bitched at for no good reason. Or any reason at all. Things have happened right in front of him, and he'll be like, "Well... that's how she gets. She doesn't say what she really wants to and then she says something rude and feels bad after. I'm sure she feels bad about it. She doesn't mean it."

I tell you truly I do not f*cking care anymore. If I wanted little bitches around me on the holidays I'd just call up my OWN family, thankyouverymuch. And yes, I'm sorry she's lonely. I'm sorry her son doesn't like visiting and her only daughter is off in California living a life. I feel bad that it's not going as well for her as she'd like it. But JOIN THE F*CKING CLUB LADY.

If she had Ebola I'd feel bad for her too, but I wouldn't let her in my house.

Not to mention, she's doing the job of alienating herself quite well without benefit of any of MY help.

Next Christmas, I'm going back to the age-old Del tradition of finding an excuse and drinking wine in front of the laptop.

If I were more like my friend Rachel, I wouldn't give up. Rachel is a personality that is totally compelled to make people like her. She sees it as a challenge. Rachel is a people person.

And I don't know if I've adequately expressed this before, but I am not.

The energy it takes for me to consistently be nice to people I don't like for an extended period of time totally depletes me. Even for people I do like very much, bite-sized allotments of time are all I can really muster before I'm drained and cranky. My oldest son, Zach, is very much the same way. I always felt a special bond with him. Years ago when I lived there, we didn't know what to do with each other, so we mostly just stayed out of each other's way. Even now, we're enthusiastic to see each other, but one on one time is tough, awkward. We are not people people.

Both my sons were diagnosed with PDD-NOS, and I suspect they got it from me. Of course few places actually dx adults for spectrum disorders but I figure, they have the same dx, and the only genetics they have in common is ME. And everyone used to say, "Well, we know Del, so we know Zach." NOW they say, "We know what Zach would say, so we know what Del would say too." However, in lieu of a proper dx for myself, let's just say I'm very much an introvert.

BUT, in bite sized interactions, you might not know it. A common coping strategy is to play a role in social life so as to 'pass.' In some instances I can come across as very charming and interested in other people.

Here's a tip: If I actually talk to you, I'm probably not that interested. My all-time favorite relationships are the ones in my head. Many of my favorite people are people I barely spoke a word to.

Anyways, my point is, with all the energy it consumes, I'm careful where I invest it. I don't have Rachel's boundless enthusiasm. I have teeny tiny bursts that require certain conditions to work efficiently. Honestly, its a full time job in and of itself. And you know what compromises those very particular, thought-out conditions? Mother-in-law bitchiness, that's what. No way I'm gonna put myself out there for this woman just to have her sh*tty attitude thrown on me no matter what I do or don't do. I am not expending any more energy on THAT. Them bitches are for the Rachels of the world. I hope she finds one, 'cuz it isn't me.

Speaking of Rachel... I left you last time with the announcement that I had started working for my friends. I was optimistic but remained skeptical of its longterm potential.

Know why?

Because don't work for your godsdamn friends, that's why.

A little back-track: Rachel and I were friends since ours teens. She married our friend Dan, and subsequently had 3 children with him. Dan has some very severe mental illness and was in my opinion and in everyone else's but Rachel's, a terrible husband because of it. They ended up having their 3 children taken away from them for a year, after several encounters with Child Services. As far as I know it was due to neglect. This is not surprising. Dan's mental issues kept him from working (and getting help),and Rachel tends to be an easily swayed enabler. They are also slobs. Dan didn't take care of himself, Rachel worked at Starbucks, and there home life was one of bug infestations and dirty diapers unchanged. This finally culminated in their losing their children to the system for awhile.

Oh, and did I mention that the oldest two are severely autistic? So throw that in for some extra complications.

Fast forward and Rachel divorced Dan. lives with her sister Becky and they are now raising the children in a FAR happier environment - mostly because of Becky, to be quite honest. When I was working there, Rachel had become quite irresponsible and boy crazy, and was pissing us off with it. She was exactly like she was at 15. She met this guy on Tinder (Lord save us from Tinder :roll: ) and he was a total creep who treated her like trash. But she became obsessed. He was a trashy, unapologetic racist and Becky and I were like, why are you wasting your time with this mofo when REALLY, this is probably a good time to start focusing on your kids that have been gone for a year.

It drove me crazy. Rachel told me to mind my own business, and I agreed I would - after all Becky was there - but I wasn't going to support it. I'd just shut my mouth as best I can.

So I thought everything was okay.

Then I find out - with no heads up btw - that I suddenly didn't have a job anymore because Rachel had still been bitching. Becky said it was nothing she felt was legit, but she was afraid if I stayed in her employ Rachel would piss me off and they'd be in a lurch without a babysitter. And I was so angry and shocked at this news that I told her, you're right. F*ck Rachel.

We didn't speak for awhile, and the worst part was I couldn't even tell Rachel why I was angry because it would implicate Becky. Ugh. TOO complicated.

Also, right around this time, my tailpipe fell off on the highway, so I am currently still without a car. And also still unemployed. Rachel and I eventually made up... because as I've stated before, she is very persistent, but she still doesn't know about the conversation with Becky.

So my 2017 is kind of a mystery. I usually have some irons in the fire, but not this time. I am totally unclear as to how to proceed. All I do know is that seeing the tail-end of 2016 inspires a small sigh of relief, while 2017 so far, simply inspires a struggle for direction. I have been pretty much cut off from the world, which is restful but boring, and if I'm totally honest maybe I needed the break. I mean, I took maybe one vacation in like 6 years, for a week I think, from working. And the role-playing coping thing... I'm not kidding, its like juggling. One thing goes out of balance and you can't perform. A bad night's sleep, nightmares, a PTSD trigger - even seemingly innocuous changes can compromise the whole adaptation process. I think I hit my stride when I worked at the hospital, but then my imaginary friends started leaving, management changed and got all SUPER-MANAGER - you know, they have to justify their new position so they start making unnecessary but SHOWY changes that hurt everyone - and I couldn't cope. And since leaving there I just downsized myself to be employed at lower and lower rungs of my field. I was hoping that would make my work life less stressful, but as a cursory look through this blog would tell you, those places had their own nightmares I had to deal with, often threatening personal safety. Working for friends was a last-ditch effort, and the car pooping out right at the same time... who knows, maybe it was a sign. But I'd feel a whole lot better about all this if I knew what to look forward to.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>
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Delaney
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Re: Del's blog: Big,Fat,Unemployed Loser (at your service)

Postby Delaney » Wed Jun 14, 2017 5:16 am

I can't sleep.

I need a new couch, first of all. This one's starting to sink in places it didn't before and is really not great for sleeping on anymore. It's starting to groan like an elderly person with a bad back.

And I know what you're thinking: why not just use the bed?

Well, because Mark is in that bed, in the hot room, snoring, and at the very least its quiet out here and I have the air conditioner on high.

By all accounts I SHOULD be able to sleep. Occasionally creaking notwithstanding.

I tried. I had a good start. I was sleepy. I had come up from our downstairs neighbor's apt, we were drinking gin and tonics and catching up on the day. Mark gets home from work. He is super grumpy for no reason, and stalks off to his bedroom. Then I'm so pissy I wake up hours later angry at him still. So I'm just stewing. I tried to read a book, and it worked to quell my anger, but then pops up another problem - I'm too f*ckin' horny. Can't concentrate for sh*t.

I should probably back up a little bit. I know its been awhile since I wrote in this thing, but in an effort to keep it relatively short and readable, let me just say that every problem I've ever written in this thing about Mark still applies and has gotten markedly worse. He is the most miserable person on earth... for like, zero reason. I've been unemployed for almost a year and Mark's general behavior has honestly just been so difficult he's like someone I barely know half the time.

So of course, you would think that becoming employed again would alleviate some of this attitude.

That has not been the case. Quite the opposite.

So we have this neighbor named Marcy. She moved in about a year ago with her cute little Dachshund. I took to her instantly, but, being the incredible social phenomena that I am, barely spoke to her after our first meeting. So we were friendly if we saw each other but other than that really didn't talk. I don't talk to any of the neighbors really.

But then one day we were outside and some apartmetn issue came up, so we started talking some more, and she mentioned needing a person to walk her dog now that she got a new job.

Went RIGHT over my head.

Sidenote: ANOTHER thing that went right over my head? During our first conversation together, I mentioned I was a smoker. And I asked if she smoked and she just answered "kinda." Then she'd repeat it like she was trying to get a point across.

It took until LAST MONTH for me to figure out she meant weed. So embarrassing.

DO NOT RELY ON HINTS TO GET YOUR POINT ACROSS NOT EVERYBODY'S BRAIN WORKS THAT WAY!

Anyway.

So I saw her in the laundry room the next day and after everything registered in my brain, offered my services to take care of the dog. I figured even if I didn't get paid it would give me a better reason to get out of bed besides mopping floors, doing dishes and laundry - which was my current home status.

Turned out she did pay me for my dog walker/sitter offer and shortly after that, she offered me a PCA job working with her elderly mother. It isn't alot of hours but its a damn good start between the two, and I can't even begin to tell you the effect having just a little financial independence has had on me. Suddenly, everything started to upswing. I wasn't just working for her, Marcy became a good friend. And for awhile there I definitely thought we were going to be more than that. She was very open, friendly, and I think she may have had the same little crush on me that I had on her all this time, and we flirted alot and even - in a casual kind of way - discussed the kind of relationship we wanted... she was at the time very casually seeing someone who lives in a different state two hours away, nothing serious, la la la... then all of a sudden, it was serious.

I can't say for sure that this happened but I get the impression that my presence in Marcy's life was not a welcome one for Sherri, the other woman in question. She started to get a little pushy, like driving all the way here unexpectedly. I saw notes on Marcy's desk, next to things like "buy cat litter" she had notes like "explain/discuss why I'm not comfortable saying 'I love you'" and "explain why I won't confirm our relationship on FB..."

I would've liked to hear the explanation for that last one :-P

So we continued to just be friends. She also mentioned that when she was my age she married a woman her age now... and then left her after a few years because the age difference started to bother her, and she is afraid someone would do the same thing to her.

Oh come on, Karma isn't ALWAYS a bitch. Once she loses this other chick and realizes I'm 82 at heart I don't think she'll feel that way, but apparently it takes a little while for the woman to come to her senses.

But that's cool, because I'm still stuck here with Mark.

So let me explain what Mark has been like now.

He f*cking hates my job. He hates that I love the puppy. He hates that I hang out downstairs. Now that's more recent, but even before that, he just hated that I had friends again. When Rachel moved back and we got close again, he bitched about her all the time. If I picked up the phone to talk to her or was invited to stay over - totally without sexual overtones, it should be noted - Mark would pitch a fit.

Every day when he came home he would unload on me. He doesn't really talk about his day, he would NEVER ask about mine, but he would seriously have meltdowns over anything and everything. Ridiculous stuff. Like if he dropped something on the floor. He doesn't just grab a paper towel and wipes it up, he FREAKS OUT. He starts cussing yelling and literally, just freaks out. I end up out on the porch most times when he's home just because he's so freakin' miserable.

A few years ago, even if he was a brat I could enjoy his company. We liked the drive-in, museums... now? I can't stand being in the car with him for 10 minutes. If he says anything at all its complaints. All he does is bitch. About the world. About the movie, about the building he's in, about the food he had! He is so miserable he makes me miserable. In a last ditch effort to get along I suggested we travel, considering even without me having a job at the time we still have a disposable income, and he was all for it. We went on one mini trip and even though he tried not to be grouchy the whole time, I couldn't imagine trying to do that again the way he is NOW. Like, I cannot be stuck in an unfamiliar area with this guy. I need to be able to walk away and get home by myself. Its like someone picking a fight and making little jabs at you all the time. And when he isn't doing that he's ignoring me for his phone. And yes, that last one is a common issue but Mark will actually just walk into the street staring at his phone. On the trip I described, we went on a subway car and he didn't have a seat. So he stands, not holding on to anything, and stares at his screen. And I thought to myself, I want to tell him to brace because the car's gonna move and he's not gonna be ready... nah, he doesn't need me to nag him in front of all these people, he'll hold on, not a child.

Turns out he is a f*cking child, because he did not hold on and did a spectacular spin and fall right onto me and a little Indian lady. We had to set him right again.

There is a very well documented streak of mental illness in his family and they are all aware of it. As much as I loved his father John, apparently as a husband he could be a bit infuriating. He had loads of anxiety, and it impacted everyone quite a bit. But John at least acknowledged this and properly got the right help and medications.

Fast forward to John Jr., who positively refuses to go see a doctor for anything but especially for that. Like, resolutely refuses even though he knows he's acting like a little sh*t. No, INSTEAD, Mark's solution was that *I* have been just too sensitive and so *I* should be on medication because as he has said, "You don't seem as angry" when I do.

But it doesn't stop there guys. Not only should I be the only one being medicated but Mark deeply resented the fact that if he wanted me to take 'em, somebody had to pay for 'em. And I still don't have a car and I had no money of my own then because Marcy was barely in the picture, so it fell to Mark. So then I'd constantly have to listen to him bitch and moan about paying for medication HE insisted I be on.

But what about health insurance? you may ask. WELL. Good news, Mark has always had GREAT health insurance through his job. He barely uses it, but he's still not willing to share, no no. He had an opportunity to put me on his plan which would've been really nice considering that we were technically a couple at the time and he wanted me to have this mood stabilizer. But he decided it was too costly.

But so is the medication.

That he wanted me to be on all the time.

These are just a handful of issues. These do not even scratch the surface because Mark and I have known each other so long, that every issue gone unresolved gives birth to bitty add on issues, and it keeps going like that until... I stopped.

I stopped speaking to him unless it was totally necessary. I stopped trying to carve out a little future for us in my mind. I stopped having sex with him, not because I was trying to be withholding, but because he developed this thing where he'll bring home presents or give me money or attention or something, I get hopeful and happy, we have sex, and BAM. Over. Back to normal. F*ck cuddling, talking, bonding. He gets in, he gets out, and leaves my ass by the proverbial sidewalk. Video game or screen time. That is truly all he cares about.

And he doesn't get it. He acts like I'm trying to punish him, and I just look at him aghast, like, do you not SEE the things you do? The way you treat me?

He does I think, but for some reason he walks around with a sense of entitlement. Yes yes, you do pay the bills. Yes yes, you could kick me out on my ass if you wanted. So then kick me out. My sex is not my rent and I am not a commodity you pull out whenever you're feeling like using me. Example: the past few days Mark has been really nice, got me a gift and was so nice to talk to again... but then we didn't have sex, so today all he did was bitch. Back to the same old, same old.

I refuse to have sex with ANYONE because I feel obligated, and frankly, that's a pretty shi**y conclusion to come to when you're supposed to be in this loving relationship.

So yeah, I just stopped. It was rough because he was blaming this on Marcy, when really it was only her fault insofar as she gave me a better perspective to figure it all out myself. The more I go out, talk with other people, the more I see what my home life has become.

I told him not to consider us together anymore. I'm only here because I don't have a better option. He doesn't believe me. He never does. Even if I date someone else he always seems to live in this world of denial.

Then one day his mother asked me how we were.

And you know what? I got sick of hiding it and sparing feelings. I told her we were terrible, I wanted to leave, and I don't even know if, after I eventually make my escape, he and I will even be friends anymore.

She was not surprised. I had brought Rachel over to her home with me because Mark's mom is selling her house so I had to get my things out of storage there. But I wasn't going without a buffer. Beth was still being bitchy to me.

Well, after I told her what was happening it all turned around. She said alot of people didn't know it but John had been alot like Mark, and he had to be on some pretty strong anxiety and anti-psychotics at one point just to get by as well as he did.

In turn I divulged another secret - Mark and I had broken up many times over the years, but she probably didn't know because Mark never tells anyone that. So what would happen is we would break up, I would start dating someone else, people would ask Mark and HE would say we were still together.

Uh-huh.

His brother Steven confirmed this, saying that when I became engaged to Francisco, Mark simply said I wasn't and that we were still together.

So then those same people would see my Facebook pictures or something, and figure I was being a dirty cheating little bitch. I can't tell you how much backlash I got about that from his friends once. I got a bunch of nasty notes and name-calling in my inbox, it was really upsetting.

And even though I told Mark that, he just said it couldn't have been that bad and changed the subject.

To this day, none of his friends know that we broke up 4 months before I posted a pic of myself and my new bf, and that they harassed me for no reason. They still just think he's dating a wicked cheater.

So yeah, I'm pretty sick to death of Mark. The whole family with the exception of two brothers I barely talk to has mostly served to piss me off in recent years. I've dealt with alot of bitchiness, alot of unfair blame, and alot of rude things said under their breath or behind my back, so yeah. Once I can leave Mark, I'm really leaving him. And his family who were at one point in my life, very special and supportive to me. But the signs have been there for awhile now.

Mark could kick me out any day, but I doubt he will. Its not really his MO. So I'm just here, existing.

But at least I'm working now. It isn't much but its a start, and I have the support of Marcy and Rachel - both fully aware of the situation and committed to helping me find a way out.

And I'm kinda tired now. I think my brain deflated by putting words together on a page. I think I can even read a book now... especially one written by a certain WTer...

I should edit before posting.

I'm not gonna edit before posting.

It's now 613a and I still haven't slept, screw the edit. Y'all can figure it out I'm sure, I believe in you.
<i>It may help to understand human affairs to be clear that most of the great triumphs and tragedies of history are caused, not by people being fundamentally good or fundamentally bad, but by people being fundamentally people. - Terry Pratchett</i>

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