The Change

The year (year and half? Two years? Something like that) of ‘What the fuck, God, did I do some minor thing to offend you? Must you insist on throwing all these tiny problems in my way until I can’t walk through all the bullshit? See, this is why I don’t go to church’ continues. The shit show of non-life-threatening problems continues, but I can’t actually air several of them to all you strange internet people, so I’ll just stick with the big, public one: The Change.

Now, I believe most of the time when women talk about ‘The Change’ they are referring to menopause. But based on the fact I’m 23 and my last period roundhouse kicked me in the face right on time, that is not what I am referring to. Not that I would put it past my body or my luck to start menopause at some impossibly young age. I’m sure that will happen. For now though, I am actually talking about changing my anxiety/depression medication, which is just as fun as it is cracked up to be (as in not at all).

I will say that changing medication by lowering the dosage of my old meds and slowly starting the new meds is a much more pleasant experience compared to when I just didn’t have my meds for 6 weeks and went through withdrawals. It’s not fun, but I don’t feel like I need to start mugging people on the street to steal their money/drugs, like I did before. I’m sad, but I’m not almost fainting when I walk up stairs and right now that’s about as big as a win as I’m going to get.

What I am going through is some definite increased anxiety (aided by all the other wonderful events going on in my life), weird sleeping patterns, headaches, nausea, and general sadness that marks the return of depression. Honestly, from that list the only thing really slowing me down is the headaches and nausea. Depression? Pff, easy, zombie mode. Not much fun to be around, but it’s functional. Anxiety? I’ll just shove those feelings down beneath zombie mode until I have privacy to deal with them. And sleep problems? Ha! I’ve never not had sleep problems. Come at me, bro. Is it a healthy way to live? Not particularly, but I did it for 21 years before and I survived. The headaches and nausea are harder to tune out now that the headaches have progressed to migraines and the nausea has me dry heaving at random times throughout the day. That has seriously cut into my productivity (but probably made zombie mode more realistic).

Overall it’s pretty much what I expected. Which is why I played ‘It’s fine that I have to sleep for 12 hours to feel rested on this medication’ for a few months before finally deciding to switch. I don’t want to go through this. I just want something that works. And if someone else tells me yoga is the answer to all my problems I will rip out their still beating heart and eat it (zombie mode is very aggressive).

And hey, I’m already in a bad mood, so let’s do an emotional, profanity riddled rant about exercise, depression, and assholes. Sometimes, exercise if the answer. If you’re depressed I encourage you to exercise, because even if it doesn’t fix everything, there is actually something to that endorphin bullshit. And I know, way easier said than done. It pretty much goes over like this: “I’m having a existential life or death crisis and you want me to go for a run? You can go take a long walk off a short cliff, my friend.” (Only more angry, I just really like that expression.)

So I am in no way saying that exercise is a bad suggestion, but if you get all ‘holier-than-thou’ on me and start spewing shit like depressed people are just lazy, I will end you. If it worked for you, that is fantastic, but don’t you dare shame me for taking medication. Do not call me weak, do not call me lazy. You have no idea all the things I’ve tried to make myself better (hint: exercise was one of the first things, didn’t help). And if you’re thinking to yourself, ‘Oh, I’m sure people don’t say that to you’ THINK AGAIN. While it is generally on the internet, where everyone is an asshole who thinks they’re a genius, it happens in real life too. Most of the time, the people are well-meaning and I do try not to be a dick about it. But I once sat in a church for an hour listening to a priest preach that depression didn’t used to exist because people weren’t so lazy. That medication was the easy way out. That no one would have depression if they just would go for a run. At the time, I had just started my medication. The dosage wasn’t right yet and I was already in a bad place, so I just sat there in the pews and cried. But if it happened again I would tell that guy to fuck right off. And throw a bible at him or something, for good measure.

naturedepression
This fucking bullshit. I need both, asswipe.

Because guess what? No one wants to be on medication to function normally. There is already a stigma around drugs, especially those for mental illnesses, so anyone on them has probably felt like a weak, lazy failure. Reinforcing this stereotype is not helpful and it prevents people who do need medication from getting the help they need. I know I resisted it for a long time because of how it is portrayed. Hell, going to therapy has a stigma, even though everyone who can go should go because life is just really hard, man. We could all use a little help. So going to therapy, agreeing to try medication, these aren’t decisions that most people take lightly. It takes a lot of guts to get there. People go through hell to get there. Don’t make it worse.

 

Dog Parks Ain’t for No Cowards

Let’s talk about dog park, kids. Why? Because most people who go to the dog park know nothing about dogs, refuse to learn anything about dogs, and cause problems (generally, for their own dogs).

So I’m going to review some realities of the dog park many people don’t realize/ignore:

Your dog is going to start a fight.

I don’t care if you dog’s breed is Sweetie McDocile, it’s name is Cupcake, and it was born when the King of Kindness had a one night stand with the Goodness Fairy. That little asshole is going to start a fight at least once. I don’t mean they’re going to start a fight every time they go to the dog park. That would be bad and you should probably stop going. But if you go consistently, it’s going to happen. It’s a reality you need to accept and be prepared for, which is why you should always watch your dog. Do not sit there on your phone. Do not bring your friends and gossip in the corner. Pay attention to your dog. Or everyone will secretly judge you. I know I will.

Another dog is going to attack your dog. And that doesn’t mean it’s a bad dog. 

If your dog is going to start a fight, then any other dog there could also start a fight. Some dogs are aggressive and shouldn’t be there. Some are just having a bad day. Sometimes playing goes too far and a fight starts. You need to be calm and you need to forgive the dog. EXAMPLE: I have a bruise the size of my hand on my thigh because I was bit by a dog on Tuesday. I got bit when the dog attacked Azlan and I tried to break it up (which I should not have done, I know this and I made a mistake. Shame on me.). The dog attacked Azlan because Azlan pushed him off a black lab this other dog was humping. I didn’t panic, the owner didn’t panic, and I stayed at the dog park and became friends with this dog. I gave him pets and he gave me kisses. Life goes on.

Dear Lord, you need to learn the difference between fighting and playing.

Some dogs play rough. Some dogs bark when they play. Some dogs growl. Some dogs tackle, or jump, or nip at ankles, or do a million other things. Again, it is important to not panic and look at the situation objectively. If you react to everything like it’s a fight, you’re going to stress out your dog, the other dogs and make everything much worse. No matter what is going on, you cannot panic. You can be forceful and confident (I encourage you to), but DO NOT PANIC. If you panic during a fight, they will fight harder. If you panic when dogs start to play rough, they will continue to play because you’re exciting them and now you are playing too and everything is fun and playing and you’re making it worse. Dogs are very sensitive to your moods and panic and fear will never help. Stay calm, stay confident, trust your dog and the other owners at the park. No one wants anyone to get hurt.

You have to let your dog learn how to say “no”.

This is going to be the advice I give other owners before they tell me to “Fuck off, you bitch.” Because Elena plays rough, but she’s a powderpuff. If a dog growls at her, or stops running, or barks, she backs off. She plays rough and we’re working on it, but she’s not aggressive in anyway. She isn’t going to start a fight (except for the one day when she does, see above) and I play with them enough to know that it looks a lot more painful than it actually is. Anyway, you’re dog is going to get beat up. It’s going to panic and look to you to defend it, but if you want to go to the dog park, you can’t do that. Keep them from getting hurt, makes sure no one is being aggressive, but you have to let them learn how to defend themselves. You have to let them learn how to say “no” without being aggressive or getting scared. And it’s scary if this is your first dog, but it’s necessary and important for them to learn these lessons for them to play well with other dogs. And I walk the walk. I let Elena get beat up and never help her, because she still has to work on this (Azlan has already learned this lesson). And she’s getting better (and also, I’m not getting run over as often. It’s really a win-win).

At the end of the day, it’s just important to make an attempt to understand how dog behavior works and always attempt to remain calm and confident. No one wants anyone to get hurt. Dogs are as unique and different as people and you need to take that into a account.

Also, leave my dogs alone, they haven’t ever actually hurt anyone, ya pansies. Rant over.

Short update

I feel like crap and I don’t know why (which should be a song. I’m pretty sure my generation would listen to it constantly). There are a number of options:

  1. I’m sick. Since I’ve been sick since fucking October, this would make sense.
  2. Allergies. The sun has been out, which is great. And the flowers are blooming, which is beautiful, but pollen isn’t. And it’s new Michigan pollen that I haven’t adapted to yet.
  3. That person from the future is trying to kill me again. Little bastard.
  4. I’m definitely still grieving. I alternate between extreme sadness and anger pretty much every 10 minutes. I have an app on my phone where a little animated cat runs around my screen and says cute little things. It said “Today is going to be a great day!” and I called it a cunt, so clearly I’m doing well.
  5. Could be depression and anxiety. I’m not sure people realize how physical these things can be. It would explain a lot of my symptoms, but it’s a usually a sign that things are about to go down hill, fast. This is not ideal.

I have absolutely no idea which of these options it could be. I mean number 3 is obviously true, but the other 4 options would be how they are attempting to get me this time.

Also since I’ve been sad I’ve been reading a lot of horror stories because that’s what I do when I’m depressed and I think I’m afraid of the dark again, so nice one, me. You are making smart, responsible choices with your life and are considered a functioning adult.

 

Pond Scum

It’s 9:30pm and I am literally covered in pond scum. As a 23-year-old semi-attractive female, I would love to tell you that I was invited to some party, got wasted, and through a series of hilarious events ended up in a pond. I would like to tell you that, but it wouldn’t be true. And actually, I wouldn’t want to tell you that because, fuck, it’s only 9:30pm, no one should be that wasted that early in the evening. Party fail. Or something like that. I don’t know, I’ve never been cool.

No, in reality I am covered in pond scum because at 9pm, my dogs looked sad. They wanted a walk, a walk that around the building wouldn’t satisfy. So, I took them for a walk around the well-lit and well-traversed path around the pond that I only ever walk on with my 60 lb husky who punches dogs in the face for humping and my 50 lb thing that people have honestly accused of being a white coyote that I somehow partially domesticated (so I’m being safe, Mother).  Anyway, after a long winter of doing whatever the fuck it is they do to survive the strange and hellish conditions of this Michigan winter, the frogs are back. I decide to take this opportunity to show my two year old white devil (aka my dog Elena) what frogs are. And while doing this my four year old asshole named Azlan jumps into the pond because he’s a douche. I pull him out and he shakes off the pond scum onto me because he is a horrible animal.  So that is why it is 9:30pm and I am covered in pond scum.

But I would rather be in my apartment with my pups covered in pond scum than sitting far too drunk in a pond with a bunch of drunk people I probably don’t know very well. I think, anyway. I haven’t ever actually done that. But shit like that isn’t exactly on my bucket list.

Anyway…onto the depressing shit this blog is known for. Well, technically, this blog isn’t popular enough to be known by anything, but if it was, it would be for the depressing shit. Or that was the goal at least. Last week I flew back to California because my best friend died. My best friend was my family’s dog, Remy, but let me explain why this dog meant so damn much to me. I have had panic attacks since I was 5-years-old, which is, to say the least, uncommon. In addition to that, I didn’t realize what they were until I was twenty. That’s at least 15 years of debilitating, undiagnosed panic that I hid because I was ashamed and confused. But from 11 on, at least I had Remy. He was an extraordinary dog, one of those naturally gifted at detecting and empathizing with human emotions. From 11 on he was there for every panic attack that I tried to hide, every depressive episode that I tried to ignore. He would sit on my lap and lick away my tears. Anything to help me feel better.

I will always remember the night that I got particularly upsetting news about my relationship at the time. It was late and he was sleeping. I would randomly start sobbing, uncontrollably. And every single time he sighed deeply, got off the couch he was sleeping on, and walked over to sit in my lap and comfort me.  He probably did this about 10 times in one night, well into the early hours of the morning. And every time I would laugh through the tears and kiss his head, because he seemed tired and annoyed, but he still got up. Every single time. And because he was there during all the moments I was too young to understand, I needed to be there for him.

My best friend, my sweet boy, had tumor in his throat. It first put pressure on his esophagus and then on his trachea. By the time I came back from Michigan, 3 months after I had last seen him as my happy, playful boy, every breath was raspy. He could only eat wet food. He couldn’t run. He couldn’t play. And there was nothing I could do. I couldn’t wipe it all away like he had done for me. All I could do was hold him and tell him that I loved him more than he or anyone else could ever know. He helped me more than I could express. He saved me.

And I was there when we put him down after a horrible night where no one in the house slept. Because he couldn’t sleep. And he was everything. I can’t express how much this dog meant to me, meant to my family, I can’t explain Remy unless you met him. He was so much more than a dog.

On his last ride to the vet, he was gasping for air. We were all crying. My family couldn’t imagine life without this dog. We still can’t. And this dog, while he was dying, while his every breath was ragged and painful, he licked away my tears. Because this dog was selfless. Because we meant everything to him. And I hope he knows he meant everything to us.

He is why my dogs mean so much to me. He is the reason why I do everything to make my dogs happy. He is the reason why when Azlan covered me in pond scum in the middle of the night, I laid in the grass and laughed at the stars. Because they can mean so much to us, and have such little time, some dirt doesn’t matter.

I will miss Remy everyday for the rest of my life. Because I loved him and because he deserved so much better than what he got.

I am not a mess

It has not been an easy year. Really it hasn’t been an easy 7 years, but let’s focus on this past year, for the sake of time. March 2016-March 2017.

I broke up with a man I thought I was going to marry. Not because he was cruel or because we fought, but because we had both changed. I hurt him and, in turn, he hurt me. And it was awful.

And while I was hurting and confused I had two men, people I had known for years, who I thought I knew and who knew me and everything I was going through tell me that they cared about me and wanted me. And who were just using me. One to pass the time, even though he was engaged (which he neglected to tell me), the other to make his ex-girlfriend jealous.

And while this was going on I was falling apart. I was a mess. While the heartbreak didn’t help, I started falling apart long before that and I kept falling after. I was on medication for the depression, but it wasn’t helping anymore. The panic attacks were back in full force. I stayed in bed all day and didn’t care what I was missing. I didn’t want to do any of it anymore. I kept a bottle of Norco under my pillow because I couldn’t fall asleep without knowing I had the option to not wake up again. So I got help. I didn’t want to, it felt hopeless and stupid, but I did and I’m still proud of that. I went to a crisis group. I upped my meds. And I got better.

I got better just in time for my family to make a drastic change. One that wasn’t completely unexpected, but I would be lying if I said it was easy or that it didn’t upset me at all.

During this change, I moved across the country. I left my friends, my family and my home behind. I was alone and without the support system I had spent years creating. And it was exciting and terrifying. Which brings us to now. I am in my first year of my Ph.D. program. I have two dogs. I’m sick all the time and it’s pissing me off. I miss my family and the girls I’ve been friends with for the last 12 years. My family dog is dying and I don’t know if I will get to see him again. I miss the ocean and the sun. I love my job and I don’t regret any of my decisions, but it would be an exaggeration to say I like Michigan.

To say the least, there have been a lot of changes this past year. It went by faster than I thought possible. And things are still hard. I still freak out sometimes. I say the wrong things. But, despite the fact that I jokingly declare it weekly, I am not a mess. I put myself back together and I learned a lot in the process. About what I want and who I am. I feel like myself for the first time in years. And it’s good.

So, no matter what the people I’ve met along the way may think, that I’m crazy or unstable, I’m not. I just had a long year. And I think I’m finally ready for the next one.

Alternative Uses for Dogs

Ok, maybe not all dogs. Probably not good dogs, for example. Or small dogs. My dogs fall into neither of those categories, being large fluffy monsters from Hell. So here are some things my dogs can teach you that you might not expect:

1. The Ability to Overcome Physical Pain

Are you a fighter? Do you need to learn how to take punches and dull your body’s natural and healthy response to pain? Well, do I have a plan for you. You see, my dogs love you. They don’t know you, but they love you. How will their love help condition you to pain? As we all know, love is pain, but it’s rarely physical pain. Unless you’re loved by my dogs. Because my dogs love you, they want you to feel included when they play. The problem with this well-meaning gesture is that my dogs don’t know what pain is. Elena has at least an inch of dense undercoat and another inch of fluffy, shock absorbing overcoat. And Azlan is, of course, a sentient ball of fluff that has no physical body in the first place. They do not understand that you don’t have this armor/fur and they will not hold back with you anymore than they do with each other, which is not at all. If you manage to survive a few weeks of wrestling with my dogs, I promise you will raise your pain tolerance to unsafe levels.

2.  Defense Maneuvers

This could also be learned while attempting to minimize your injuries during wrestling, but if you want to improve your reaction time to an attack, the best way is to eat your meals on the floor with my dogs.  The floor is the dogs domain, if you are on the floor with your food, both you and your food are their property. They also only have respect for me (mom) and while that is a tiny amount of respect, it keeps them from actually stealing food out of my hands. They do not have this respect for you. To keep my dogs from stealing any of your food, you have to develop your reflexes because they are very sneaky and very fast. In challenge mode, I will take away your entire meal if they get any of it, which will use hunger to encourage you to improve. By the end of the training, you’re reaction time will be cut in half or you will have died of hunger.

3. Appreciation for Alone Time

As stated before, my dogs LOVE you. And they love you so much they will never leave you alone. Never. They will be with you when you eat, when you sleep, and when you shit. They will even stick their head around the curtain while you’re showering and watch you. Because you are never allowed to leave them. EVER. If you shut the door, they will cry and beat at it and not listen when you tell them to stop, because, again, they also do not respect you. When you begin to lock yourself in your freezing car while it’s snowing to be alone for one solitary minute, you’ll have learned your lesson. I have heard this lesson can also be learned when raising human children.

4. Deathlike slumber

Are you a light sleeper? Does the smallest noise or movement end your dreams? Fear not, we have the answer: Dogs. If you can sleep through my dogs attempting to wake you up in the morning, you will be able to sleep through the apocalypse. Here’s the plan:

You alter your schedule to you go to sleep at 4am.

7 am – I release the dogs into your room. Sensing that it is far past the time to go to the dog park, both will growl at you, increasing in volume as you continue to ignore them.

7:30 am – They are now standing on top of you as they growl.

8 am – Azlan is attempting to dig you out from under the covers. Elena is sitting by the door, silently threatening to shit  on the carpet because she does not respect you and WILL be going outside. And she’s willing to use biological warfare to get what she wants.

8:30 am – Azlan is now rolling around on top of you. I don’t know what it is meant to accomplish, and I don’t think he does either. But fuck if it doesn’t wake you up. Elena has shit on your carpet and you begin to choke on the fumes.

9 am – Azlan is literally just sitting on your face. Elena, upset that you have ignore her attempts to anger you, is now looking for ways to destroy everything you love.

At this point, if you have managed to stay in bed and in a state where going back to sleep is actually possible, I will come in and take the monsters away. Slowly, you will be woken up less and less by their antics and soon be able to sleep like the dead.

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The devils

I would like to end this post by again stating how much I love my dogs. I wouldn’t trade them for anything. But this is a warning post for anyone thinking about getting a dog. It ain’t all sunshine and rainbows.

Awake

It’s 1 am on Thursday and I’m awake and angry at the world. Why am I awake? Well, it could be good ole fashion insomnia. It could be because my ovaries are trying to murder me for once again not giving them a child. And it could be because I can’t breath. It’s probably the breathing thing, because trying to convince yourself that unconsciousness is a good idea when you’re wheezing goes against all survival instincts. Well, at least it does if you have the overactive imagination that comes with anxiety, like I do. It could get worse and I’ll die in my sleep. Will it? Statistics say no, but it COULD and that’s enough to have me furiously typing on my keyboard instead blissfully sleeping.

Why I can’t breath is a mystery. It could be allergies from the frustratingly inconsistent Michigan weather. My body could finally be rebelling against living in a snowglobe full of dog hair. Or this miserable winter could have once again overcome my delicate California immune system and given me some other minor malady. It’s hard to say, and no answers helps my current predicament. And I can’t find my inhaler, and so now I have to once again return to the doctor just to get a simple prescription for one of my ever present and chronic conditions. But I suppose it’s worth the trouble if I get to breath again. But just barely.

Rant 2. Let’s talk about hormones, folks. Hormones are the absolute worst sort of torture our bodies inflict on us. They are continually frustrating, from unexplained anger at minor annoyance to this whole ‘love’ business that everyone celebrated on Tuesday. Love is probably the worst and most frustrating emotion there is, but my disdain and desire for it deserve their own post. Back to hormones. As you may guess, from the whole murderous ovary business, I’m on my period. I particularly hate the rush of hormones I get this week, as most women do. While I am a perfectly happy single girl the rest of the month, Aunt Flow makes me want to be in a relationship. Not just in a relationship, but married. It makes me want to be in love and have someone to hold me forever and ever. The rest of the month, I question whether I ever want to get married. The rest of the month, shit, I don’t even really like being held. Let’s face it people, cuddling is fine for a while, but it gets uncomfortable fast. Humans were never meant to embrace for long periods of time. Anyway, the change is most disturbing and I do not approve.

Finally, I have been avoiding posting because of the necessity (that I have imposed on myself) of discussing Trump. There’s just really too much to discuss. Too much wrong in what he’s already done and what he plans to do. He is a threat to the freedom of women, minorities, science, and (while some won’t admit it) all Americans. And I’m scared. But I plan on doing something about it. (That sounds a little murder-y. Reasonable things, I assure you). He also seems to have gone out of his way to pick people that oppose the very basis of the government agencies they will be heading (I mean Pruitt? DeVos? Where did he even find these people?). And geez, Bannon? Just in general. If it was only Trump, if it was only  one, corrupt person, I would have more hope. But he’s surrounding himself with unqualified extremists. And he has a Republican Senate to back him up.  This was far less composed than I wanted it to be, but it’s all I have right now. I don’t have the energy to sort through all my disbelief (and there is a new source of it everyday) to be anymore articulate at the moment. I’m sure more will come.

But there are details that make that seem slightly less crazy…

I just locked myself in my car and cried because my dog wouldn’t poop. But there are details that make that seem slightly less crazy.

Detail 1. Azlan does not like to poop on his leash. He likes to poop alone, with no one watching him. Which is why he normally does this at the dog park, which we did not go to today because…

Detail 2. I have a bacterial infection in my stomach. It’s cause by H. pylori and it’s something that happens to people, apparently. So I am in a lot of pain and I am on a lot of drugs. Like 8 drugs. All the drugs. Too many drugs to be a rational person.

o_helicobacter-pylori
This is the bacterial bastard (from  www.helico.com/images/o_heliobacter-pylori.png)

 

So Azlan was barking because he needed to poop, we walked around for 30 minutes (each step agony for me), but he wouldn’t go. So I threw him back in the house and went to go cry alone in my car because I could not deal with his shit (pun intended).

Eventually, I tied him to a long rope so he could pretend to have a little privacy and the fucker did his business. But I’m still a little peeved.

Which is why it sucks to be in a new state. I’m not sure who in California would have been willing to help me get my dog to shit at 9pm on a Tuesday, but at least I would have had options. There is no one here that I feel comfortable enough with to call at night and have a drug-fueled sob with. Sad days.

ANYWAY back to the stomach infection, which is just more proof that someone is passively trying to kill me. I have had many strange and painful illnesses in my life, none of them life-threatening, but all of them long and unlikely. Like viral meningitis, ovarian cysts, and other less exciting things.

In addition to the stomach infection, my neck is messed up, which is giving me a persistent headache despite being on some pretty high dose pain medicine. The doctor thinks I slept on my neck funny, but I disagree.

Personally, I think my arch enemy from the future (which I will have when I take over the world. Trumps election has solidified this goal) sent nanobots back in time to infect me with H. pylori and then slowly start sawing away at my spinal cord, explaining how I managed to hurt my neck bad enough to cause a headache while also getting a bacterial infection in my god damn stomach. Soon, it will be completely severed, turning me until the worlds first zombie (because I’m not just going to die, that would be too simple). I’ll have to start eating human brains. Hiding the murders and morgue raids I will need to commit to satisfy my undead hunger will slow down my plans for world domination by at least a year. It’s a dastardly plan, though less effective since my arch enemy has morals and seems to feel a bit queasy about killing a young, innocent (so far at least) girl. They are so weak (maybe).

Whether I’m right or the doctor is, I think we can all agree that both situations are equally likely.

I’m going to return to laying around and moaning now. Cheers.

P.S. I will likely comment on the upsetting election results from last week when my stomach and head stop hurting. Which should be in a little over 4 years, haha. Gotta laugh to keep from crying. But, no, I will comment on that when my body only hurts from the rising anxiety and fear instead of unfriendly nanobots.

 

 

Advice followed by needless rambling

For any taking psych medications (or any medication, really) never quit cold turkey. Always consult your doctor so you can make a plan to slowly lower the dosage and get off the meds in a responsible manner, like the god damn adult you are.

I learned this lesson, as I must for most things, the hard way. No, I did not decide to stop taking my meds because I love them and they love. The long and short of it is my healthcare provider screwed me over and I had to get a new prescription and the whole thing resulted in no meds for Beth. For about 3 weeks. Which was less than fun.

There are the symptoms that everyone would expect. The return of the soul crushing depression, the panic attacks, all the normal stuff. And while this was deeply upsetting in way, it was a hullabaloo that I have lived with for 6 years, so it was ok. But the withdrawal symptoms extended far beyond the emotional turmoil. It was headaches, body aches, nausea, and these things called “brain zaps”which literally feel like electrical shocks to the brain. Brain zaps also made me dizzy and almost faint quite often. I was in a pretty shit mood through it all, which is saying something because I am a cynical pessimist on my best day. Let’s just say I did not murder anyone and I should be given a medal for it. Or at least a gold star sticker.

But, in the words of my new psychiatrist, who I love, “At least we know you still need them.” Yes we do, doctor lady. Yes we do.

I’m back on them now, and back up to dose, so I can finally go back to hating the truly important things that deserve hating. Like this god damn weather. Its dropped to the 40s during the day already and I hate it as much as I thought I would. I swear when I die and go to Hell (because there’s just no way I’m going anywhere else) I imagine something like this happening:

Satan: “I am stabbing you with a pitchfork, why are you smiling?”

Me: “Because it’s warm here.”

Satan: “Warm? You’re in Hell. Your flesh is literally melting.”

Me: “Well, yes, but I’m not cold.”

At which point Satan would leave me in exasperation because how on earth are expected to deal with one so completely ridiculous? It might even inspire him to turn down the room temperature a bit. You know, let Hell freeze over, just to spite me and my smartass mouth. Which would be bad for me, but good for Hell, I think. It’s been the same for a long time, and if you aren’t moving forward you’re moving backward, am I right?

Also, I got a new dog. Her name is Elena, but not really because I call her Little Girl 90% of the time. She’s a monster.

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Michigan

I’m back, bitches.

Much has happened since I last posted. I moved across the country from California to Michigan, where summer is a pathetic, whimpering puppy compared to my beautiful, fire-ridden California. There is no smell of smoke in the air, no slight burning in your chest as you inhale the 110 degree air. God, I miss it already.

Instead it has been raining off and on since I moved here in July. Rain. In August. I mean, what kind of witchcraft is that? Everything is still green and alive in the middle of summer and it’s creating humidity. Humidity that makes me feeling like I’m living in the Devil’s sweaty armpit. It’s a lush, green horror land full of water and no extreme heat advisories. It’s basically hell on earth.

But besides this horribly mild weather, Michigan isn’t the worst place ever. And I’ll admit that not being in a drought is nice. For now, I can begrudgingly say that I am enjoying this state, so far. I have yet to experience winter and that will undoubtedly crush my soul. The snow terrifies me. I will not make it through this first winter with all my fingers and toes, if I even manage to survive it at all. Once the first snow falls, this blog will no doubt be a chronicle of my final descent into madness. I don’t believe I have ever gone more than a week without seeing the sun. I dread the dark days ahead of me.

Moving is awful. Packing is awful, driving across the country with a dog is awful, and getting your apartment, internet, and utilities set up and working together is the worst of it all. Moving across the country is especially awful because now I have to go out and make new friends. New friends. Just saying it sounds exhausting. Talking to new people is not the most calming experience for me and I loathe the new stages of friendship where you have to watch what you say. My friends (the few I keep around) know everything about me. Everything. And now I will have to find a develop that type of closeness with someone else? No. People suck. Maybe I’ll just live a solitary life and finish my Ph.D. early.

Oh, that’s right my friends. I’m a Ph.D. student, and you should be scared. This emotionally unstable little package is in graduate school and I will be using my knowledge for evil. I am getting my degree in plant breeding, which doesn’t sound threatening until you remember GMOs. That’s right, I’m going to create plants that turn people into horrific mutants, poison the water supply, and set a plague upon your village. And when I talk to anti-GMO protesters, I will be adamant that I chose this career because it makes me feel like God. Almighty. Powerful. It’s scary, so it doesn’t have to be true. That’s how this bullshit works, right Jenny McCarthy?

I might just be breeding for crops for drought tolerance, but a deranged, power hungry scientist bent on destroying the line between man and God is so much sexier. And exactly what the fear mongers expect me to be. And, God, I just don’t want to let the little people down.