7.20.2018

Existential Crisis: I'm Having One

It struck me the other day (like a ton of shit house bricks) that I am malcontent.

Am I having a midlife crisis? A psychotic break? I don't know. What I do know is I have developed - or have likely always had - a fear of being ordinary.

Now I can't go out and buy a Maserati (like, ever) or jump out of a plane or go deep sea diving off the coast of Dahab (within the foreseeable future). Nor can I garner a mistress (well.. wait.) But I can change what I can reach and I can do what I've always thought of doing, or even whatever I gave a split second thought to doing. And why not? Because fuck you all. That's why. Who cares what anyone else thinks? So fuck you and your preconceived notions of who I should be.
🖕

I realized I barely recognize myself.

It's not the lines on my face (that I don't have. Truth, bitches.) or the weight I've put on my frame (which I do have). It's not anything physical that I can put a finger on. It's a feeling that I'm missing out on life, that it's moving too fast and I'm so far behind. It's feeling like I want something different but don't know how to go about getting it, or even what it is I want.

But I do know. At least in part. I want to be who I used to be. So welcome me back.

On a side note, I used to work as a dietary aid when I was in my early 20s at a nursing home. I was happier then. I don't know exactly why nor does it particularly matter. What's mildly (and irrelevantly) ironic is that I got my nose pierced while I worked there. I'm currently a night shift nurse at the same home. And I did a thing.

Who doesn't love Snapchat?

That's for another post.

Also ironic (possibly relevant) is I had never heard Jekyll and Hyde (Five Finger Death Punch) and it just came on as I'm posting this. Thank you, Spotify.

There's just so much goddamned weight on my shoulders
All I'm trying to do is live my motherfucking life
Supposed to be happy, but I'm only getting colder
Wear a smile on my face, but there's a demon inside


6.11.2018

June 2018

I've started using this Couch to 10k app. Well honestly, I've restarted using it several times now. I'm having trouble sticking with it for the usual reason - back/hip/knee pain, but also because of (now previous) job issues, depression, and lack of motivation.

The back/hip pain continues. I'm attempting to set up an appointment for that long put-off MRI but my present insurance will expire at the end of the month, what with quitting my job and all. The knee pain is the same as it's always been - there, and fixable if I'd just do the physical therapy.

So this running thing. I've started it again from scratch. I got frustrated going out to run and being miserable and slow, so I decided to limit myself to following the program and not trying to go any farther than whatever week/day I'm in. So far it's really easy. I like easy.

The job thing.  I'd  love  to get into great detail about all of that here, but as usual being in nursing suggests against it. I'm starting a new job next week which will be three 12 hour night shifts a week (instead of four 8s). Twelves are long, but the four days off a week are nice. The new job also pays better.

The depression thing. I've stayed off happy pills since my I'm a Total Nutjob Post. This may change, it may not. There's a lot of factors involved in this. Most importantly: my Savannah was diagnosed with Laryngeal Paralysis, which someday I may talk about in more detail. But not today. She had surgery on the 16th of May and is presently doing pretty well. For those of you that search for L.P. and wind up here, that is one of the best sites I've found on the disorder. Also, do a search on Facebook for "Laryngeal Paralysis support group" and you'll find some very knowledgeable and amazing people. They've been my sanity.

And the lack of motivation is an accumulation of the aforementioned bullshit. ☹

I'm also (re)starting this 30 Day Challenge:

Sucks
I thought about trying the keto thing, but honestly it sounds really difficult without meat/dairy and the idea of no carbs makes me want to cut a bitch.

One thing I can scratch off
Anyway, I'll try to post more.

1.20.2018

Let's Talk About Books

I love books. I believe there needs to be a bookstore/library that is open 24/7 and offers coffee for people who love books (and coffee) to just go and sit (with coffee) and be in their element (with coffee) surrounded by glorious books (and drink coffee). (Coffee is also glorious.)

I'm not going to give you summations as you can read them at the following links. I'm just going to tell you what I think you should read. Remember, my taste leans toward, way way waaaay toward, the horror genre.

I recently read Hex by Thomas Olde Heuvelt. And loved it. It is one of the most unique, creative books I've ever read.

A Game For All the Family by Sophie Hannah. I liked this one, and I think it's worth a read.

It's been awhile since I read Suffer the Children by Craig DiLouie, but it was fantastic.

Likewise, it's been a minute since I read Orson Scott Card's Lost Boys, but it to this day, is one of the best books I think I've read. He writes mostly Science Fiction which I don't care for, but this book is the exception, and a damn nice one.

I know many people are now into Joe Hill and I have read Horns, Heart-Shaped Box, and NOS4A2. Most people I know liked NOS4A2 best, but Heart-Shaped Box was my favorite of the three. I'd recommend all three, though.

Let me know if you read, or have read any of these. I'd love to know what you think!


11.12.2017

The More Things Change the More Things Stay the Same

I've been thinking for awhile that I needed to post, but I haven't had anything to say that's been worth saying. This is still probably true, but I've decided to post anyway in the spirit of transparency.


Over the past year or so, I've posted things that suggest (not so subtly) that I've been struggling. Physically, as well as emotionally. It seems like I've felt this way forever and that I can only just barely remember "The Before". Yet when I look back into some of the posts I've made here, I can't believe I've felt so.. bad.. for this long!

I have what is called "Clinical Depression" or "Major Depressive Disorder".

There, I said it. Well, I typed it. In public.

I have taken antidepressants off and on since I was a teenager. Throughout the time of this blog's existence, I had been on the same one for approximately four years. Until last Sunday, November 5th when I stopped taking it for various reasons - one, the biggest, being that it had ceased to help. (I would be happy to talk to you about which medication I was, and have been on, if you would like to email me at bombedblondchelle@gmail.com).

I am presently going through withdrawals, which causes physical as well as emotional side effects. This is what has prompted my decision to write this post. I know that there are others that live with depression, whether or not they read me, and if this post serves no further purpose at least maybe one other person can realize they don't suffer alone.

I have felt the seemingly infinite sadness, the hopelessness, the anxiety, withdrawal, frustration, physical pain, and suicidal ideation. These symptoms prompt many people to begin antidepressant therapy, and when therapy fails, these symptoms often return with a vengeance.

I have gained weight, all but stopped running, struggle to get out of bed in the morning, can't find enthusiasm for things I used to love, and can't see the light at the end of the tunnel. I know  this is withdrawal and will let up eventually. And even though I know this, I don't believe it. If that makes sense. I can't visualize the day that I will be "ok".

I am secretly terrified that people will look at me and know that I'm not ok. I don't want anyone to know that I'm a wreck inside, that I'm struggling. That I'm anything but calm, collected, and sane

Depression and other mental illness is a taboo topic. Nobody wants to talk about it and this means that people are often embarrassed by it, ashamed of it.

There is nothing to be embarrassed or ashamed of. Depression does not mean you're crazy.

It is alright to seek help, even if that help isn't pharmaceutical. Medicine, antidepressants, aren't for everyone. It is ok to call a friend, a family member, and just say "hey, I need help."

Running used to help me. Help, not fix. When I began having back problems, it slowed my running down which in turn caused weight gain, that then makes it harder to run. (I also have an eating disorder, but that's an entirely separate post.) Some days, many many days, I have zero interest in running anymore. There's almost like a black cloud physically hovering over me, a fogginess that makes it feel hard to breathe and my body feel heavy. I just can't picture myself doing the things that I used to love so much. I just.. can't.. step out the door. There is no "reason", no particular cause for my inability to open the door and step outside. It. Just. Is.

I look for things to shut my brain off, to quiet the hopelessness and unexplainable sadness. Drawing, painting sometimes help. Binge watching Netflix sometimes helps. Physical activity sometimes helps (how I miss running regularly!)

"If you can't fly then run, if you can't run then walk, if you can't walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward." - Martin Luther King Jr.

Coming off of the meds (much like starting them) causes a myriad of nastiness: Anxiety, depression and mood swings, dizziness and balance problems, vertigo, electric shock sensations, fatigue, flu-like symptoms, headache, loss of coordination, muscle spasms, nausea/vomiting, nightmares, tremors, insomnia, restless leg syndrome.

I.
Have.
Them.
ALL.

I want to reiterate, that if you have or have had anything like what I have talked about here: You are not alone. I promise. I'm right here. And if you have nobody else you feel like you can talk to, or even if you do have someone else to talk to, or if you find it easier to talk to a stranger, or even if you just need to talk to someone that "gets it". I'm here.

I don't want to indicate that antidepressants are negative or a bad thing, they are often literally life-savers. I am not unwilling to try something new medicinally, but I am going to wait until the dust settles from the last one I took before trying something else. I want to start at baseline.

I am not going to harm myself.

If you are feeling like you want to hurt yourself, please, please get help.

Call 911 or your local emergency number immediately.
Also consider these options if you're having suicidal thoughts:
  • Call your doctor or mental health professional.
  • Call a suicide hotline number — in the U.S., call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255). Use that same number and press "1" to reach the Veterans Crisis Line.
  • Reach out to a close friend or loved one.
  • Contact a minister, spiritual leader or someone else in your faith community.

This is not the end. You can get through this. We both can. 

**Disclaimer: While I am an experienced medical professional (RN), my expertise on the matter in this blog post is strictly personal and opinion.




9.25.2017

Speed Bump (I've Hit One)

I went out to run on the 21st and within the first few steps I started having back and left leg pain. Made it to a whole 0.20 mile before having to stop. I walked for awhile, tried again, made it to 0.75 mile before stopping. I walked about 4 miles and every step was miserable for my lower back.

Since, my lower back has felt tight. I haven't run since.


8.29.2017

I Don't "Identify" as a "Feminist". Or DO I?

I'm actually contemplating this post as I write it which isn't particularly unusual for me, as I write pretty much like I think. I went for a run last night and I got whistled at, followed by some unintelligible attempt at speech that sounded more like the gutteral rambling of a prehistoric neanderthal seeing woman for the first time. The rest of my run (cut short because it got dark) spent loosely reciting this post in my head.

We've been hearing (for a long time) things like "driving while female" and if you google you'll also find speaking, walking, talking, working, aging, and more to the point of my post running while female.

These topics of "fill in the blank while female" are so vast that I can't begin to touch on them in just one post. Because of this, at present I'm going to stay with one that I identify most with at the current time...


Running While Female

I've been a runner for going on 5 years now. I've been catcalled, whistled at, propositioned. Likely every woman has walked by a group of men at some point in time or another (construction workers often get this stigma) and been inappropriately addressed. I seem to be a favorite of Hispanic men (is it just me?) and their fluent Spanish that I do not understand.

Boys, I may not always understand what you're saying, but I do comprehend the lewd gestures. Just saying.

I've been offered rides (to the elderly gentleman that offered me a ride because I had fallen and tore up my hands and knees, you are not included in this. Again, thank you!), I've had cars stop at stop signs and just sit there, watching. I've heard the ever-so-originally-creative (did you think of that all by yourself?) "Run, Forrest, Run!" I've heard "hey baby/sexy/girl", "run on over here", "don't make me chase you!", "lookin' good, girl/lady/bitch".

I've been told to "go fucking home!" by a pizza delivery man, who then followed it to his friend with, "watch this!" and proceeded to speed to the next corner to turn around and come back my way. They drove off when I turned down a street with people sitting on their porches.

I've been "moo'd" at. Both when I was 117lbs and 160lbs. It's not about weight. It's about shame and degradation.

Stop and think about that for a moment. What kind of man, what kind of person moos at another human being? What does said person hope to accomplish? Is the other person going to get right home and go on a diet? Purge themselves of whatever they had for dinner? Be ashamed to exercise in public? Be ashamed to go outside? What do you hope to accomplish? Does it make you feel better to make another person, one that you most likely have never even met, feel bad about themselves?

What is so wrong in your life that this is how you pass the time?

I have a girlfriend that won't run alone because she is overweight and men yell derogatory things out their windows from the safety of their cars. And it pisses me off . I tell her that these men are fat slobs shoving cheeseburgers into their gaping maws between verbal barrages on women runners. I tell her that when their heart inevitably attacks, that I'll just jiggle on by. But it's not enough.

Women are often afraid to defend themselves in these instances. We're more likely to be assaulted, raped, murdered. We've been taught by society that it's safer to smile or laugh or ignore.

Now lets stop and think about that for a moment as well. A run. An exercise routine that many people prefer to do outside in nature. This activity that brings entertainment, comfort, and HEALTH to so many is unsafe for approximately half of the population. For women. Read that again. Running outside can be unsafe for women. 

What?

Men, who do you think you are? Who the FUCK do you think you are?! How dare you.

I cross the street when I find myself sharing the sidewalk with a man. When I do have to pass closely to a man, I find myself defensive. Don't ask me the time, don't ask me directions. I won't stop for you. In fact, I may just run a little faster. I have carried my keys between my fingers, wound my ball chain keychain around my knuckles. I've carried pepper spray. They make many "female running safety devices" (why do I even have to put those four words into succession?!) for self defense in case of being attacked on a run.

I wave and say hello or good morning or good evening, but what if I don't do it because I'm a nice person but simply because I'm afraid that if I'm not friendly that you will hurt me?

Woman are getting killed while running.
Runner's World, Police Investigating Three Recent Deaths of Female Runners
Boston Globe, The Real Dangers of Running While Female

All cars contain possible attackers. All men potential assailants.

To the decent men out there, you should be livid. These women are your mothers, your sisters, wives, girlfriends, friends, daughters. And we're afraid to run alone, to defend ourselves.

I was a nighttime runner. Nine p.m. shouldn't be too late for a woman to be out alone. One a.m., two a.m. shouldn't be too late for women to be out alone. There is no time that should be unsafe for us, no place unsafe, simply because we're female. This world is ours too.

Huffington Post,  16 Women Share What It's Really Like To Go Running While Female

I need feminism because I have to plan my workout around when I'm the least likely to be attacked.

So am I a feminist? Yes.

8.28.2017

Dear August,

In a previous post you may remember it was mentioned that I'm not funny, and I stated that I was in a dark space. I haven't blogged much for various reasons, this being one of them. Well I've been thinking about this. Whether you read my blog or you don't, if you even know it exists or choose not to read because I'm "not funny" or because I'm not a little ray of sunshine (news, folks, I'm never sunshiney!), you can't deny my realism. If you're looking for a blog that's going to make you laugh with every post, or inspire you with every blogged run, or motivate you to get out there, you're probably in the wrong place at least half of the time. If you're looking to possibly relate to someone else's struggle, determination, successes AND failures then by all means read on (and drop me your link if you have a blog/facebook page/youtube!) and let me know you're here.

(...and there's your cheesy Lifetime movie summation for the day, folks. *gag*)

We're all in this shit storm together.

So Dear August,

I have a few things I want to say to you. Not all of them are kind and not all can be said on a public forum as I'm a nurse and the law frowns upon it (those are really the same things). I am going to say what I can.

I love and hate you this year.

This year you've seen me end a job that I shouldn't have been at in the first place. A job that as I drove to, I wanted to cry every time. I should thank you for this, actually. The job I was recruited to a year ago - under the impression I was going to a trauma unit that turned out to be a surgical unit when I applied for an oncology unit - reached it's limit for me. At this job I worked with some of the worst (personality and professionally) nurses I've ever worked with, as well as some of the absolute best nurses (best people) I've ever met in my life. Leaving there lifted a weight off of me that I hadn't realized had been pushing me down.

I've been having migraines again, off and on. This is always a good time. I chalk it up to stress, but aside from the Topamax (thank you, most compassionate Universe) I have very little by way of managing these as I've never managed to find any specific "triggers". A migraine pretty effectively derails me for the rest of any given day (or two, or three..)

I have slowly been increasing my running distance, but not my speed. I wish I had a watch that would track mileage but not time/speed. I use both my FitBit Blaze (which is fantastic for steps, heart rate, etc., but not so much for mileage as it doesn't always connect, nor does it always seem the most accurate) and Garmin Forerunner 110 (which is so  last, um, several seasons ago, but I love this thing!) I'm still struggling with deconditioning, back/hip pain/discomfort, knee pain (I still hate PT), and motivation, so I'm trying to not make running suck more than it does right now by not worrying trying not to care about my snail-through-molasses speed.

I am slowly regaining respect for my ability and what I am able to do.

So fuck you, spinal issue, I STARTED running because I had a problem with my knees.

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Hurricane Harvey you are a nasty bastard, firstly.  The United States is in turmoil, and Harvey comes along to stir up more misery. But then, I see things like The Flooding in Southwest Florida Facebook Safety Check and I see Facebook friends ticking off that they're safe on this page and I take a look and I see people, tons and tons of people, offering help and supplies and even places to stay to strangers  and it doesn't matter in the least little bit what color or sexual preference these people are, nor who they voted for. Not. One. Little. Bit.



  
“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, "Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”
Fred Rogers



 

If you are able, please help:
How to help the victims of Hurricane Harvey abc7chicago
Aid Hurricane Harvey Victims CNN
Here's How to Help the Victims of Hurricane Harvey Huffington Post

Don't forget the area's shelters!
Hurricane Harvey Help Austin Pets Alive
Hurricane Harvey: who is doing what for animals? animals24-7
How to Support Animal Shelters During Hurricane Harvey Bustle

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Welcome September,

Please behave...