the_siobhan: (steps)
I am incredibly prone to earworms. I get them very easily and a bad one can last for weeks if not months. I sometimes wonder if it's related to the tendency towards intrusive thoughts; if the wheels for "step in front of the train, step in front of the train, step in front of the train" just happen to fit in the exact same grooves as "a three hour tour, a three hour tour, a three hour tour".

Last week Michael Pagliaro played at the CNE and thanks to hot weather and the resultant open windows I got one of his songs stuck in my head for a week. This week it was Trooper, no thanks to the co-worker who keeps a radio playing on her desk tuned to some awful baby-boomer station. It's been 70's CanCon all month in here.

(You know Astrid, I keep thinking about the bar manager you told me about who thought all Canadian music sucks. I was aghast when I first heard that, but if she went to high school at the same time I did, she might actually have a point.)

I desperately need to go listen to music with chainsaws in it. Or wash my brain out with bleach. Something.
the_siobhan: (wormtooth)
I haven't been much on updating lately.

My brain chemistry has been, quite frankly, a fucking shitshow. Pretty much all I have in me is to bully myself out of bed in the morning, bully myself to leave the house for work, and then bully myself to go to bed at the end of the day.

So you know, see you on the other side. When it comes.
the_siobhan: It means, "to rot" (Fester)
If I need cheering up the best way to do it is punk rock.

So last night the lovely D took me to see Stiff Little Fingers at the Horseshoe. Their shows are always notable for being one of the few gigs I go to where I'm not the oldest person there by a long shot. Somebody was rolling around on top of the mosh pit and I'm standing at the back calling, "That's how you break a hip!"

I spent most of the night talking to two women who sat down next to us and started comparing who-we-knew-back-in-the-day stories. D always says he is constantly flummoxed by how often perfect strangers will just walk up to me and start talking. Apparently people never do that to him, I tell him it's because he has resting murder face.

So today I am feeling decidedly underslept. Fortunately I'm pretty much caught up with all the stuff I have to get done before next week so it's OK if I'm a little disorganized.

Monday is Halloween so my co-workers decided to decorate the command centre. I made the mistake of telling them I had bones at home, so that's why I rode the streetcar to work this morning with two big bags packed full of dead things. I am now getting quizzical looks from many many people.

Tomorrow's schedule is bill paying and listing things for sale. Tonight it's video games and a bottle of wine, because I am taking the night off.
the_siobhan: (wormtooth)
Work has been absolutely nuts. They're bringing in some new software that encompasses everything from payroll to telephony and half my team is going to be in training for most of next month, me included. Of course this doesn't preclude having to do our regular jobs, which are already ramping up to get everything ready for the new fiscal year. So everybody is scrambling to get as much set up in advance as possible before we go to this training. Somehow that hasn't translated into any sense of urgency on the part of the people we rely on for information & updates, go figure.

I can handle busy at work or busy at the house, but both together... I start getting a little frayed around my corners, to put it mildly. It became known this past week that we have a big unwanted expense looming over us that we are going to have to deal with whether we can afford it or not. So I crunched the numbers this week - and crunched more numbers, and went holy shit and took out a machete and... we can do it. Just. It means no spending money on anything ever, so goodbye my weekly laptops and pints sessions for the foreseeable future. That sucks, 'cause I really enjoyed those.

You would think that lying awake at night adding up columns of numbers in my head would fill up all the space normally taken up by the random unnecessary shit my anxiety latches onto. Ha ha. No.

Deep breaths. This too will pass.

It fucking better.
the_siobhan: (dinosaur)
The Sinfest comic

Don't ask me man, I have no idea.
the_siobhan: (wormtooth)
I appear to have hit the point in the mental health cycle where I cry on the bus.

Yesterday it was because Axel got to sleep in and I didn't. Today it was because we were out of coffee.

I'm really hoping things get better once I can breath.
the_siobhan: (limp)
So I now have an answer as to whether or not I can write an entire book in a month. That answer is "no".

I am exactly at the halfway point of where I should be, however, which means I am well on track for getting an entire book written in two months if I can keep going at this rate. That won't be in August, because my family is coming to visit, so I figure I'll be taking a break and getting back to it in September. Which means I will be finished writing my 50,000 words probably early October.

They will be terrible, terrible, not very good words, but they will be written down and therefore I will have my story.

I suspect the process of turning it into a story worth actually reading is going to take a lot longer.

********************


I finally pulled the plug on FB. This time of year I'm already hanging onto the fringes of what's left of my mental health with the tips of my fingernails and having people tag me on stuff that makes me cry was sending me right over the edge.

Yeah, I'm an emotional cripple and I'm not afraid to admit it.

So anyway, you can't reach me through FB anymore. It's email or LJ. You can send a FB message through one of the partners, but they aren't super reliable about passing them on. (By which I mean they will usually tell me stuff, but they aren't prompt about it and if it's an event that's taking place I usually find out about it the day it's happening. And if I already have my pants off, good luck with getting me to put them back on.)

********************


I haven't touched the German since Axe & I visited there... two years ago? I think. Anyway at some random moment last week I decided to reinstall the Duolingo app and I've been plugging away at it again.

Learning languages is supposed to be good for encouraging new neural pathways and depression causes definite cognitive damage, so whether or not I'm ever successful in learning anything I figure it's a good hobby to have.

I have to say I'm often surprised at the words they choose to include. I'm doing the section on animal names right now and a lot of time I end up wondering why they devote so much time to including words I'll probably never use. I mean, once I have insect, do I really need fly, beetle and bee? Why include duck, chicken and hawk once I know the word for bird?

I suspect that one of the reason I lost interest in it last time is because it felt like there was too much filler.

********************


Axel has gone full-on vegan. Did I mention that? Like one day it's all pig roasts and yummy yummy beef machines; the next day there is tempeh and almond milk in my fridge.

I find it hilarious only because it's so typical of the man to go from 0 to 60 overnight like that.

Anyway I'm fully supportive of the idea of eating less meat. The transition period just tends to be a little bumpy - I've noticed most new vegetarians go through a period where they cook exactly the same way, but just use tofu in place of the meat. And I'm just not that big a fan of tofu.

But hey, he's still doing all the cooking so I am not about to complain. And the tofu vindaloo he made in the crock-pot was really very good.

********************


I am so boring right now. No money to do anything and it's too hot to go outside.
the_siobhan: It means, "to rot" (Fester)
The black dog is well and truly back. Hence the radio silence, I find it hard to post when I'm like this.

And like always when it gets this bad, I can't seem to force myself to do the things that improve my brain chemistry. It's like a virus that infects your immune system, it attacks the very things that might help you heal.

Part of the problem of course, is that one of the things that would probably help is dialing down my stress level by about 7000 notches, and things that would really help with that are in no way under my control.

I'm seeing more and more articles about "work-life" balance proliferating at my workplace. You know the ones, they talk about how to reduce the stress in your life by saying things like get exercise, eat healthy, and take some time for yourself. Myself, I've pretty much come to the conclusion that if they don't start off with, "be born wealthy" you might as well just throw the fucking thing away, because it's just designed to make you feel bad about being unhappy that our entire society is designed to use you up and toss what's left.

Not that I'm bitter.

No, fuck that. I am totally bitter.

The worst part is that the writing has slowed to a crawl. My creative bone always goes limp when the depression gets bad. I hate that.

Still. Vacation next week. No money to do anything, but at least I can catch up on my sleep and maybe flog out a few thousand words. That will be nice.
the_siobhan: (blowfish)
I booked yesterday off work and just did nothing[1] all day. It was exactly what I needed and I feel so much better now.




[1] Well, not nothing. I made banana bread and did a load of dishes and swept up the resulting broken glass. But close enough.
the_siobhan: (BOOM)
Today's stress moment: Losing my shit on a streetcar driver who closed the door in my face.

The trouble with being under pressure is that sometimes it leaks around the seals.
the_siobhan: (on fire)
It's been getting - increasingly loud in here. I'm fighting it, but.. yeah. Anyway, it's to the point that I'm giving serious consideration to going back on meds for a while. (And I hate the meds, so you know it must be bad.)

I opened my feed this morning and there are three posts in a row from people talking about needing to start or re-up their crazy pills.

Phase of the moon? Something in the water? Or just the soul-crushing impact of living in a capitalist society. You decide.
the_siobhan: (What Would Jim Carrey Do?)
True story

One of Axel's LARP characters is The People's Poet. When he created the character he put together a binder full of his "poems" to bring to game so he could always have the words handy. (Song lyrics, mostly.)

It's a post-apocalyptic setting so any paper he used had to look appropriately aged and decrepit. I found out he was looking up techniques for "aging" paper, so I dug into one of my boxes of stuff and pulled out some of my blank notebooks from Junior High School[1]. The paper has gone a lovely yellow colour and it's so dried out the edges have gone all flakey, so it's perfect for his use.

That's how much of a packrat I am.


[1]Junior High School in Toronto is usually around age 12-13. I am 52.
the_siobhan: (Professor Fly)
The latest news around the Gin Palace is that we have decided to accelerate the plans to build an apartment in the basement. Unfortunately we don't have enough money yet to do everything we want to do - I really want to lower the floor by a couple of feet, but that's holy-shit levels of expensive. We're waiting on actual quotes, but since we've decided that water-proofing and building a new bathroom take priority and since both of those things are also money pits, we're expecting that the addition of more head room will just have to wait a few more years. (Person who will be living in said apartment has been consulted on this decision and is in agreement.)

To that end I took the week off work and the two of us have been going through all the stuff in the basement so we can empty it out in preparation for the work. You know the thing about hoarding? It creeps up on you. I honestly had no idea how bad it was. At one point I was sitting on the floor surrounded by empty boxes and full garbage bags and laughing and sobbing at the same time, because holy shit brain, two trash bags of old socks? How could you be any more ridiculous? Axel assures me I go through the same thing every time I "level up". I dunno. I think I've blocked it out. Although sitting on the floor sobbing whilst surrounded by boxes and boxes of canned goods does sound kind of vaguely familiar.

Ah, mental illness. Every day you bring me on a new and magical journey though What The Fuck land.

Anyway. As well as finally throwing out a lot of stuff that is OBVIOUSLY GARBAGE WHAT THE HELL, we also did a massive purge of our books. Axel has been able to convert 95% of what we want to keep into electronic format and so five bookcases have been condensed down to one and I have a sixth that I still have to sort through. It just so happens that our neighbourhood is having a big yard sale event on Saturday, so I'll be up early dragging everything out onto the front walk in the hopes that people will contribute to our cause by taking it all away.

stacks of books

We both still have a wall in the storage room to go through. Axel's stuff is mostly RPG-related and the last of the albums he has to rip. My stuff is half assorted souvenirs from events like Convergence and past gigs and half is Fiona's stuff that I had to put down and not deal with for a while. I'm taking today off to chill and let the dust filter out of my lungs and tomorrow I will tackle more boxes.

When I split up with the ex-husband I moved back to Toronto with just what I could pack into the back of my hatchback. That was a loooooooong time ago.


[EDIT] I have added another stack of books since that picture was taken. Rock'n'roll.
the_siobhan: (psychochicken)
I moved desks today at work. The previous tenant apparently had hoarding tendancies - I have donated staplers, high-lighters and file folders to almost everybody on my team. She also apparently saved all her pencil shavings. OK, maybe not all of them, but a lot. I also found a receipt dated 2016, so um.

Coincidentally I started reading Life of Pi this morning and there is a single throwaway line in a paragraph about Pi sharing meals for the author and how good a cook he is. The line refers to Pi's kitchen being packed with canned goods that fill every cupboard and line every shelf, enough for a famine or a seige. And I went That's it! That's my kitchen! That's what food insecurity does to you.
the_siobhan: (blowfish)
So apparently misophonia is a thing.

People who have misophonia are most commonly angered by specific sounds, such as slurping, throat-clearing, nail-clipping, chewing, drinking, tooth-brushing, breathing, sniffing, talking, sneezing, yawning, walking, gum-chewing or popping, laughing, snoring, swallowing, gulping, typing, coughing, humming, whistling, singing, certain consonants, or repetitive sounds.

...

Misophonia may be associated with OCD, anxiety and depressive disorders.


Huh.
the_siobhan: (dinosaur)
There is not much going on in the home front these days. Zachary, The World's Most Social Cat[1] has gone off to a new foster home where they can work on his behavioural issues. Apparently it's going really well, which makes me happy. He is an awesome cat if he can just be convinced to use his litter box.

He wasn't even gone for 48 hours when the mice started running around the kitchen again, the little bastards.

So now as of yesterday we have George, who apparently was dumped outside and so is skittish and traumatised. I haven't even seen him yet, he only came out from under the bed after everybody was asleep.

Work continues to be work. I had to buy a new mouthguard last week ($700! What the shit!) because I chewed right through my old one. My dentist asked me if I was stressed out and I laughed in her face.

On the plus side my head is in way better shape than I have any right to expect. I'm kinda waiting on the other shoe to fall, but so far the exercise seems to actually making a difference. So totally worth feeling like I'm being stabbed in the knees. And I'm actually writing again, holy shit. It's all utter crap of course, but who cares. I am making a thing! It's an ugly thing, but it's mine and I made it!

A friend recently made a post about taking up writing porn for a living. I'm seriously considering it. I mean, c'mon, Chuck Tingle sells books, how could I possibly go wrong?



[1]He spent the entire NYE party lounging in the comfy chair and accepting scritches with an air of it being no more than his rightful due. There were several times I walked past people who were sitting on the floor petting him and said, "You can move him you know." and every single one of them said, "No, no, this is his chair." It was hilarious.
the_siobhan: (on fire)
I saw a job posting today that I am planning on applying for. (To do list for tonight, dig out resume.) And pretty much the second I made that decision the brain weasels started up and are now making a godawful racket about every stupid thing I have ever done in the entire entirety of my life, I mean like going back to when I was six.

What the shit, brain? It's kind of horrifying to see just how quickly my disease jumps in to sabotage me.

It's also become kind of obvious I'm not the only one around here with itchy feet. One of my co-workers is definitely the kind who can't keep her discontent to herself and she's been complaining loud and long lately. Not that I need vindication that it's time to move on, but it is nice to know that I'm not the only one who sees a problem.
the_siobhan: (no spoons)
Noted for tracking purposes: The Big Black Dog is here, right on schedule. That gave me something like 6-7 weeks of warning?

Definitely far from the worst I've had. Well, so far anyway.

A few more decades I'll get good at this.
the_siobhan: (punk rock)
WHY THE SHIT DO I EVER THINK IT'S A GOOD IDEA TO GET ON THE SCALE? WHY THE SHIT DO I THINK IT'S A BAD IDEA AND THEN FUCKING DO IT ANYWAY?

Ahem.

Moving on.

It appears I was counting chickens when it came to the hot flashes. They are back like woah. I am now playing the sweater-comes-off-sweater-goes-on-sweater-comes-off game multiple times a day. I'm currently clocking them at one every couple of hours. This stage can sincerely fuck right off any time.

The freakiest part is that my sweat smells completely wrong. I attribute this to the steroids I'm on to treat the virus that took over the upper third of my body last week. It makes me smell like nicotine which... can't be right, but that's what my nose is registering. It's disconcerting as hell.

An interesting thing about the angry cycle, it seems to really damp down the voices in my head that tell me I'm worthless and contribute to all the crippling anxiety and panic attacks. No more brain weasels. Very much brain honey badgers. Brain wolverines[1] maybe. Whatever the current gold standard is for the asshole of the animal kingdom. (Really it's a good thing that mind-reading isn't a thing, it gets stupid in here. I promise to hie my ass to a doctor before I start actually smacking strangers in the street.) I don't remember that from prior cycles, but I really only just figured out that it's a regular part of my mental illness. Whatever, it's better than feeling like offing myself all the time, so I'll take it.

It has also contributed to some physical restlessness. Which I am liking very much even though I am occasionally at a loss as to what to do with it. It's been a while since I noticed I had a body in anything but a bad way. No worries. I'll get the hang of it again. And that's probably what inspired me to weigh myself this morning, in your daily installment of Bad Ideas 'R' Us. Less good, it's messing with my sleep. (Although that might also just be the result of playing throw-the-duvet-off-pull-the-duvet-on-throw-the-duvet-off several times per night.)

So...mostly yay? I guess? For now. I know there's a cliff coming, but maybe I can get in some groundwork to reduce the splatter zone. Not that it's ever worked before, but I keep telling myself I learn more each time I do this.

Forward.


[1] Until I told him, Axel didn't know that Wolverines were an actual animal. He thought the comic book character was named by playing on the word "wolf". Apparently they don't have wolverines in England.
the_siobhan: (This is my boomstick)
I have come to the conclusion that my boss is a bully. She reminds me of teachers I had at public school who would force the anxious kids out onto the floor whenever there was some kind of dancing or public activity, pushing the kids to "have fun" no matter how miserable it made them. She organized an Ugly Sweater Christmas party and harrassed people every day until they agreed to participate. She's big on the social activities and the networking and meanwhile I'm all, "I just want to come in, do my meaningless fucking job, and then get the fuck away from you people." Yesterday I found out she's taking golf lessons to advance her career. It probably will.

I guess I'm just not a team player.

Back when I started working for the bank I described my career change by telling people I used to work in the health care industry and got job satisfaction from knowing I was doing something that helped people but that I had a emotional abuse-victim relationship with my employers. "But now I work for the devil, and he treats me really well." I can't say that any more. I haven't been able to say it for a while.

I can't really blame them. The Evil Empire has no space for worker bees that are too sick & depressed to fit in.

There always seems to be a point in my depression cycle where I get really really angry. It's usually the harbinger of a major downward spiral, but if I'm quick I can sometimes manage to harness the energy while it lasts. So I guess that's the point I'm at now.

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the_siobhan: It means, "to rot" (Default)
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September 2017

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