If we were having coffee, I would be curled up in a chair with a blanket on, and I would even drink some coffee even though I gave it up years ago and haven’t looked back. I would tell you that insomnia is kicking my ass lately, which is funny because in the first week of November I kept going to bed early and still oversleeping. I was doing well for a while. In bed by 11, up by 7:30. I was an actual, functioning human being with a relatively normal sleep schedule and consistent brain power. NO IDEA WHAT HAPPENED.
Let’s just establish that my sleep patterns are eternally and irrevocably fucked up. (Yes, I’ve tried melatonin. No, I don’t need/want Ambien or any other sleep aid. It’s too hard to get my body to regulate the drugs.)
I would tell you that I almost didn’t post today because I have a lot of things to bitch about and I worried it would be petty in light of the terrorist bombings this weekend. Then I decided that I still have legitimate problems and this is my blog.
I would tell you I’m permanently off of PPIs. (They’re a class of medications that are used to treat frequent heartburn and GERD.) I’ve been on and off of them for years, and I’ve tried several different ones. They work better to manage my acid reflux symptoms than any other type of medication, but they cause me a range of other problems, and since I’ve been on omeprazole the last few weeks, I developed a new, weird problem in my throat, couldn’t swallow, and began to experience swelling. It wasn’t until the swelling that anybody listened, since throat pain and difficulty swallowing are GERD symptoms. I knew it wasn’t GERD pain, but nobody listens to chronic illness patients, especially about their pain. H2 blockers like Rantidine don’t work for me at all.
I tried a completely new diet last year, with foods strictly on the “safe to eat with reflux” side. It didn’t help at all (though I do feel somewhat better having cut down salt and fat intake.) and the absence of red meat meant I needed iron supplements. I am anemic. Iron supplements led to other stomach problems, so eventually I just brought beef back in. (No, I can’t eat a vegan/vegetarian diet. I need some meat for proteins because vegetarian sources are almost all migraine triggers, and too many vegetables will lead to MASSIVE intestinal problems that I just I just don’t want to deal with. )
So, I’m back to lots of Tums and Gaviscon, neither of which will my insurance cover even when prescribed by my doctor. My doctor, by the way, is a moron and keeps telling me “bed rest” is an appropriate treatment for my arms since I’m a wheelchair user who relies on my arms for everything and that’s why they’re not healing up. So yeah, I’ll stay in bed all day, munching OTC antacids and using Aspercreme. (Ibuprofen and Naproxin sodium make me deathly ill; I’ve looked for a new PCP. Affordable transportation and coverage is an issue.)
I would tell you that I’m frustrated because I’m spending ungodly amounts of money on OTC medications and incontinence supplies that aren’t covered by my insurance nor included in any of the exclusions for state benefits, so even though I HAVE legit monthly medical expenses, I can’t get any extra help. I would ask you to just believe me because I’m too tired and grouchy for another round of questions about how the system actually works, which programs I have or haven’t applied to, which agencies I’ve called, local charities, etc.
I would tell you that I made the mistake of inviting some neighbors over last month. I want to make new friends, and this was part of my ongoing effort to engage with people more. Because of my abuse history and PTSD, inviting people into my home is a big emotional risk. I’m now the talk of my apartment complex because my house is not clean enough for this one guy and I am a “slob” and a “pack rat.” My living room legitimately resembles a storage unit–but nothing is dirty. I use a wheelchair, so I need things to be laid out at a lower level, and our landlords apparently ran out of money before completing renovations in the kitchen and bathroom. So everything that belongs in there has been in the living room for three years. (No, I can’t move, or sue the landlord.) I explained all that to the neighbors before they came over. So, yeah, this is why I dislike socializing with neighbors.
I would tell you that my mom took a bad fall last week, and I’m still upset about it. I wrote an essay about that and my dad’s subsequent assholery. It helped but also brought up a slew of other personal topics that I would like to write about. I’m concerned about turning the blog into a catalogue of traumatic experiences and asshole anecdotes. I don’t want to be writing an online diary. My alternative is to shut the blog down until my personal life and emotions are in a happier place. I process best when I can talk things through or write about them.
I was working on another essay about why I write things like that one and there ended up being a whole middle section about various friends who’ve betrayed my trust. I don’t want to start a big fight, but I’m also sick of censoring myself on my own blog space. I’m always going, “No, that person reads my blog sometimes…they might be hurt and I don’t want to argue anymore.” Lately, I’m just like “Fuck it.”
Sometimes I don’t realize what I need to say until I’m in the middle of saying it. I don’t know how that works, but I’ll start writing something completely random and end up making connections between things and suddenly realize WHY a certain event affected me the way it did. Then if I have to take out the whole section, the blog post doesn’t make any sense, and I’m frustrated because I don’t have a space where I feel free to talk about what I want, which is the whole point of the blog in the first place.
It’s particularly hard when what I want to say involves other bloggers, because I have a pretty close knit group of blogging associates, and almost all of us know one another. I don’t want to start a big flame war, and don’t want people to feel caught in the middle. I stopped blogging for several months in 2014 because it was trying to work out blogger conflicts privately, and there are things I still want to say about that period. (I had throat issues at the time, but I didn’t need to shut the blog down over that.) I hate it when people just pick on each other and complain about petty problem on their blogs–but there’s another level where I feel like I’m constantly guarding what I say here. I feel caught between this:
I think it’s time to channel my inner New Yorker and let the chips fall where they may. I don’t know how that goes with wanting to make friends. We shall see what 2016 brings.