Monday, March 18, 2019

Feelin' Good



So, it's been a few weeks and I wanted to make sure that I stopped in and let you guys know how it was all going. It's had its ups and downs that's for sure. I just have to stop singing and dancing to this song so I can actually type it all out.  I love this song so much. The video is a bit weird though, don't you think?

Okay, it's done. Right. So the past few weeks...Well, last post I told you that I had decided to start back on my anti-depressant and that I was a bit nervous because I tend to forget if it's doing me any good once I'm on it for a bit. That's part of the reason that I want to write about it. I want to have a record that I can look back on.

I decided to start with a half dose because the last time I took a full dose (I was on the max allowed dosage) it made me feel loopy. I spent an hour one evening cutting all of my pills in half and rebottling them. That night, I took my first dose. The next day I was headachey and nauseous all day long. It was not fun, but I took another dose the following night because I figured maybe I just had to adjust to it. The following day was a Thursday. I know this because my youngest had a jazz performance at a club. I had the same headache but the queasiness was more on and off, but man, when it was on, I wanted to throw up. Ugh. That night, I didn't take any. The thought of swallowing anything was too much.

Friday I still felt crummy, but better. I decided that I'd try an every other day regimen for a while. Saturday I woke up and felt great. Go figure. So, I took another dose that night. No reason to put it off if I'm feeling okay with it. Sunday I woke up and started the first real period that I've had in over three years. Now I'm wonder if the medicine combined with hormonal crap and just made me feel dreadful. No real way to know, but I've not had that god awful reaction since.

So, since I started, I only missed that one dose and that was on purpose. I'm really starting to notice a change. I've had my down days and I've had some serious stressors, but so far I've been handling them. The past couple of days I've found myself smiling, singing, and god help the poor cats who can see me...dancing. I feel lighter. I feel more like things are going to be okay, and that they're possible.

I had about 4 nights of total insomnia, but I think that I'm slowly moving past that which is good. The past two days I haven't slept until noon or later which is a relief. Regulating sleep is a top priority because my afternoons are too busy to lose my mornings.

In a bit of other news, I'm thrilled to say that #Fridgepocalypse is over now. Our brand new refrigerator was delivered this afternoon. If you don't know what that hashtag means, I'll just say that this is our second fridge purchase in just over a month. I'm going to have to put myself out there more as a proofreader/editor to make the money back as quickly as I can but I don't believe that it's impossible. I just have to get the right eyes on what it is that I do.

As for weight, I don't really have an update there. I don't have a way to weigh myself at home and I haven't figured out a solution for that yet. I don't really want to drive 20 minutes to the doctor's office every couple of weeks, even though I'm pretty sure they'd let me stop in and use the scales. I will say that I think that my pants feel a bit looser, but it's hard for me to tell if that's just wishful thinking or reality. I promise I'll keep updating that bit as often as I can though. I need to know too if the bits I'm trying are working. Only five more months until that appointment. Now that the new fridge is here though, I can get my water bottles filled and in there so that I have a ready supply of drinking water on hand which will be nice.






Current Weight: ???
Goal Weight: 150 lbs
Days in a Row Taking Meds: 18

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Ch..Ch...Ch...Changes

Ch..Ch...Ch...Changes
Another month has flown by and I can't even tell you where it went. February in Michigan has been brutal with things like polar vortexes, icemageddons, and then a bomb cyclone. There was a lot of drama involving me attempting to get a fridge back into my house and a lot of time just being mom.

Now here we are, the last day before the end of the month and life hasn't slowed down even slightly. As I'm writing this, I'm sitting at a jazz orchestra rehearsal. My youngest son has been a part of this audition only group for two years so for two years, I've lost about 8 hours each day getting him here and back...as well as the rehearsal time. He loves it and I love sitting in, even if it takes away from other things I could be...and maybe should be doing.

So, here we are and I'm trying to sort through the stuff in my head. Thank goodness I have all of you to talk to about things! It really does help me work through them.

Yesterday, I had a doctor's appointment. Nope, let's back up. On Monday, I took myself off to a hotel for an overnight stay. My water heater has decided it doesn't like hot water anymore and with the appointment coming up, I needed a night away and a long, hot shower. Best decision I've made in a while. Thank goodness for tiny tax returns which let me do that. I got to relax and rest up which I badly needed.

Then, yesterday, I went to see a plastic surgeon. If you know me, you know I have huge boobs. You'll also know that I'd rather not, but I'd never have plastic surgery for vanity's sake. They're causing me issues. My collar bone hurts a lot of the time. I never have straight shoulders. I'm always hunched over because of them. Boobs weigh a lot, guys. So, after my doctor asking me about it for over five years, I decided it was time. It took me almost 5 months to get this appointment.

The doctor was super nice, but basically laid it out that if I want to lose weight, I need to do it pre-surgery. If I do the surgery first and then lose the weight, the boobs will sag, and he doesn't think I'd be happy with them. The reality is that they beyond sag now and they're not close to symmetrical. Still, if I'm going to go through all of this, I do want to look down and be happy afterwards.

I left the appointment and sat in my car and cried. I wasn't hurt or upset by anything that he said. He couldn't have been nicer. He told me that if I wanted to go ahead now, he would do the full exam and proceed. He also suggested, that if I wanted, I could come back in six months and we could reevaluate everything. That would give me time to work on losing weight if that's what I wanted to do. If, at that point, I didn't feel I was where I wanted to be yet, we could put it off another three to six months.

I sat and cried because I'm so angry with myself that I've allowed everything to overwhelm me to the point where I've gotten to the weight I am. I'm frustrated because I've dug myself into this deep hole between my health, weight, and house. I'm overwhelmed. I look around and don't know quite how to dig myself out. On top of everything, DHS took my projected income form for this year (which they required me to predict and which I am nowhere near making at this point) and cut my food stamps down to less than $300 a month for three of us. Luckily, Ben is off at school and Roger is busy with school and work and music, so isn't at my house all of the time.

Still, I have no idea how to feed even just me in a super healthy way with that amount of money. I'm sure it's not impossible and I'll just have to be incredibly careful about what I do buy. I'll have to tightly meal plan and stick with it.

I want to do this. I know I can do this. I'm also completely overwhelmed. I don't really know where to start. No, that's not true either! I'm full of arguing with myself tonight. I guess here's the tiny baby plan as much as it is:

1. Start logging calories using My Fitness Pal. Not so much trying to keep within what it's saying but logging so I can see where the problems may be.
2. Take the last bit of my tax return and order some glass water bottles for the fridge. I may not have hot water, but I do have water and a filter for the kitchen tap. This will allow me to not have to buy water and save a bit of money there while at the same time having a healthy drink option in the house.
3. Start talking with my tiny Facebook weight loss group about things. Support is super important.
4. Continue taking my medication. Last night I started back on a half dose of my anti-depressant and a full dose of my blood pressure medication.

Hmm...I guess it really is a tiny baby plan. That's all I've got right now.  I have six months to see how far I can get. I'm stuck without much exercise right now because I can't safely get out of the house and walk, but maybe in another month or two I can add that in. I do have a Fitbit, even if the rubber band causes my skin to react. Perhaps for my birthday (in 6 months), I can ask for a leather band for it to help alleviate that problem. If I can make some changes around the house, maybe I can start walking from one side to the other...I figure it'll only take a few hundred trips to make a mile..heh...

For now though, it's one baby step at a time. If anyone knows of some low impact exercises I can do at home that don't require a lot of space, please let me know! I'm still getting over a sprained ankle and what I suspect is a pinched nerve in my elbow, but I'm willing to try new things.

Take care of all of you!





Current Weight: 313.5
Goal Weight: A lot less ...like 150 pounds less.
Days in a row taking meds: 1

Friday, January 25, 2019

Riding the Edge

Riding the Edge
Link to book below post.
It's been a while. I know. Maybe I'm writing just to myself. It's possible and that's okay. I'm here today because I need to be here. I need to lay everything out and maybe it will start coming together for me.

It's been about two weeks now since we dropped Ben off at school. I always knew that I'd be one of those moms who cried when she did that. I wasn't wrong. Walking away from him broke my heart. He was crying and trying to be so brave. We both knew it was the right decision, but in that moment, I think we both just wanted to go home. He has done really well though. I think the independence while knowing we're only a little ways away has been good for him.

Meanwhile, his brother is going through college auditions and about to turn 18 in just a couple of days. I'm struggling with that too. I so badly want for him to get into the school that he really wants. I want what I never had, a chance to follow his dreams.

Here at home things could be going better. The fridge broke last weekend and it's taken me a week to get it just about cleaned out. I have one more bag to go and it'll only be a small bag...like grocery bag size. The rest of the house is a total tip because I just can't seem to find the balance of home, work, kids, mental health, and everything else. I had a trip planned to a convention in March. I may have written about it. I was so proud to be granted a pro badge. Now, because of the fridge, I won't be going. The money for my plane ticket has to go to getting a fridge. I mean, we can't live on crackers and crunch n munch forever, right?

I keep trying to find the bright spots...like hey, now I really will be able to get a fresh start on food. Then, the voice pops into my head reminding me that my foodstamps were cut because of Ben working. For every positive voice, there are five negative ones drowning it out. Even my sense of humor that usually gets me through these spots is eerily quiet. Perhaps it's because I posted asking people to help and nobody answered. Meanwhile, the wife of one of my closest posted a $2000 fundraiser to get her dog's broken leg sorted and they've raised nearly $1500, I think. Look, I know I can live without a fridge and the pup's leg really needs to be cared for but it's the perfect thing for the negatives to latch onto. It's easy for them to say...hey look, you don't matter. Nobody wants to help you.

I look around and think how alone it makes me feel, that nobody will send me $5 but they'll send someone else art supplies so they can do a bullet journal. I don't know. I know I'm feeling sorry for myself and that it won't help anything, but I'm really struggling to shut it down. Do you know what's the worst part maybe? It's that voice...the one that sounds suspiciously like my mother...saying that I'm whining, that none of this matters, that my feelings don't matter, and that I'm being the weak, useless person that she always knew I was.

That's bullshit. It really is. I am stronger than she ever knew. I've gone through more than a lot and I've survived. I'm still surviving. Is it ideal? Hell no. It's pretty crappy actually, but I'm still here. So...here's the thing...I'm going to put this out there. I need to put it out somewhere...and here is as good as anywhere, perhaps better...because on some level, it's safe. Nobody will read this here.

I'm broke. Hell, I'm beyond broke. If it weren't for a good friend helping me out, I'd be sleeping on a park bench somewhere. The fridge broke and while it will get replaced, knowing that part of the hold up is the fact that my kitchen is beyond ugh is dragging me down. I can hear people saying, "Well why don't you just clean it up? Then you could have a new to you fridge and it'd be better." Except, it's ever quite that easy, is it? I've managed to slowly empty the fridge but every time I look at the dining alcove, I freeze. I can't seem to do a thing about it. Honestly, I could probably put a trash bag into the can (which is also busted, by the way), grab the snow shovel, and just shovel it all away...and weep with every scoop because all of that...it's like seeing a million failures right in front of my eyes. It's every negative screaming at me and it leaves me frozen. I had someone who was going to come help me, someone who tries very hard to understand, and doesn't judge me, but first it was car trouble, then weather...and so I'm on my own...and I'm afraid that my own just isn't good enough.

And only getting colder!
Then, there's the weather. Winter in Michigan can really suck but up until a week or so ago, it wasn't bad and I was really thankful for that. Why? The furnace decided to stop working. I can hear the voices again.. "Just call the landlord and get her to fix or replace it for you." Except...I can't. We all know that I can't. If I can't get strangers in to haul away a busted fridge and put a different one in because of the condition of things, there's no way that I can get someone who will report back to the landlord. To fix the furnace, the kitchen, living room, and laundry room have to be cleaned from top to bottom. It feels impossible...and we're about to go into a week of possibly record breaking cold. I have a small space heater and the oven running 24/7 when I'm home. Right now, it's 61 in here. I can live with that. This week? I don't know how cold it might get in here. I'll be having to go out quite a bit which is good and bad. Good because the car's heat works and I'll be going heated places. Bad because I'll have to turn everything off and the house temp drops fast. I've seen it drop 5-7 degrees in just a couple of hours.

I guess you can probably see where this is going right? I need money and I need it like yesterday. I don't have it because the reality is that with my mental health issues, I can't work outside of the house. I got a letter from DHS yesterday saying that I have to either start working 80 hours a month or volunteering 80 hours a month or taking some kind of classes. I do work. I proofread and edit books and stories for other people. I don't make $600/mo doing it though and that's how much I have to make to keep them off my back. I'm good at what I do and my clients are happy, but I don't have 20 comic clients putting out a book each month. Comics and books take time to create. As for my own books, I haven't received a single royalty payment in almost two years. I don't know if the books aren't selling at all or just not enough to bother sending me the change.

I've considered setting up a Patreon where for $5/mo, you could get early viewing on a story that will later go into an anthology. I'd do two different ones...one for children's stories and one for erotica. I have a Ko-Fi now. Actually, I've had it for months and months but not one single person has ever used it. I get it. People want to get something for their money, which is why I think maybe Patreon might be a better choice. I don't know that people would sign up there either though.

That wouldn't be enough, but it would be something. I talked to one of my clients today and he told me that he would have 5-10 books for me in 2019. At the rate he pays me, that's either not even one month or possibly 2.5 in an entire year. Clearly that won't work. I love his books and working with him and I'm not going to stop. I'm just saying that it isn't enough to get to where I need to be. I either need to be doing 4-6 books a month proofreading or some combination of things...proofreading novels, proofreading comics, Patreon, Ko-Fi...my own books starting to bring in some funds.

I do have a plan to take down my erotica stories that are also listed with the other ones in their series and then properly format the series and put those up on Amazon. There's no reason to have the individual smaller ones up by themselves. I'm planning on listing the series ones at 99c. They aren't long, more like a bedtime story but I hope worth the 99c. They won't make me millions but even $10/mo would help.

There is one other option and it's one that I'm going to have to do and hope that it goes well. I have the opportunity to apply for a ghostwriter's position. If I got it, I'd be writing mm romance/erotica of various types. It pays pretty well and with one thing would fix this problem. Here are the voices again, "If you knew it would solve this, why haven't you done it? Oh wait, because you're probably going to fail and then what?" Ugh. It's not just that. I could fail. I could fail and then still be screwed. Or, I could be decent at it, get hired, and then with my struggles to balance everything, it could end up being the only thing I do. 2019 was supposed to be the year of finally defeating the hoarding monster and setting myself up for success in 2020. Here we are, less than a month in, and that's already going out the window and I don't know what to do about it.

So, there you go...I'm riding the edge. I'm riding the edge of just wanting to give up and wanting to fight for what it is that I truly want. I'm riding the edge of do I fight for my dreams or do I continue to settle and make do with what I *have* to do.  I'm really tired of settling or making do with what I have. This isn't the life that I want for myself. I want to write and I want to be successful at it. I want to help other authors make their books be as good as they can be before they're sent out into the world. I love what I do and I want to keep doing it. I don't know how, but even if I do this ghostwriting thing...and I don't see how I can not do it...I need to keep finding me. I can't lose myself in the horror that is poverty.

I don't know if people will help me and support me. I don't know if they'll follow me on Patreon or donate to me on Ko-Fi. I don't know if they'll go and spend 99c on an erotica story. I don't know, if I get that far, if they'll back me on Kickstarter. I honestly don't know. I've been burned quite a bit by people who say they'll hire me and then don't or industry people who say they'll start sending business my way but then don't...or worse, keep it for themselves. I do know though that there are a lot of people out there and I don't need a million, or even a thousand. I need just enough to bring in maybe $1000/mo for now. Why $1000 and not $600? Because it's time to stop making just enough and time to start making enough that I can invest back in myself, in my home, and in my future.

$1000 = 34 comic book proofreadings
$1000 = 5 50k word book proofreadings
$1000 = 200 Patreon supporters
$1000 = 225,000 words proofread
$1000 = 334 cups of coffee purchased through Ko-Fi

That seems like an awful lot, doesn't it? It's not impossible though, especially if there was a small income from my writing coming in as well. I really, really, really want to get the erotica stuff already on Amazon updated. I desperately want to get Nevermore finished and sent off to Nick. I want to get my publishing house name chosen and Tales from the Toy Store written and published. I have dreams. I need to make them happen.

I hope that I have the support to make them happen. I hope that people will recommend me when they hear of someone looking. I hope that when editor/proofreader friends have overflow, they'll send
it to me. I hope that people will enjoy my writing and be willing to buy it. I have a lot of hope and at the end of the day, that's really darned important.

Today, though I feel as if I'm standing on a crumbling foundation, though it'd be so easy to just quit, I'm choosing hope and I hope (see what I did there?) that all of you will stick with me through this never ending journey of ups and downs. It's a rocky path, but it's a path. If by some small chance you want to buy a book or buy me a cup of coffee to help keep me going, I've added links above. If not, that's okay. I just hope that you got something out of me doing a total brain/emotion dump out here. I know this post was really for me, but I always hope that there's someone out there who reads it and says, "Hey, yeah, I get this and maybe for this minute, I, too, can choose hope."





The book in the image above was found via a random Google image search and something about it spoke to me. It appears to be out of print, but if you're interested in learning more about it, check out its Amazon page.

Welcoming Weight Loss   © 2008. Template Recipes by Emporium Digital

TOP