Germ Factory

So while we were in Florida, when my nephew came over he had a terrible runny nose and watery eyes. We all assumed it was something blooming and allergies that were bothering him because it had been so long since he was in day care. Anyway… long story short: I’m sick. I started feeling like I had a sore throat the day before we left for home and ever since then it’s just gone down hill. I’m cautiously hopeful that I’m on the mend now because I can now, as of today, swallow without pain. But my voice is hoarse and sometimes just drops out in the middle of a word. It made talking on the phone to cancel an appointment very difficult, but I managed it. It seems like every time I see that nephew, I always get sick after. One time, which was no surprise I got sick, he crawled over to me on the couch and sneezed directly in my face. That was nice. 🙄 So that nephew is now called the Germ Factory. I love him to death anyway. And, to be perfectly honest, I think I would still take seeing him and getting sick over not seeing him.

Right now, at this exact moment, I am sitting outside on the back patio next to the pool writing this. I’m supposed to be writing a research paper for my class, but I’m ahead of schedule and trying to get back on schedule here – which means a post every Wednesday from me!

I didn’t grow up in a house like this. I had everything I ever wanted or needed, but my parents saved more money than they spent. Now that they’re close to retiring it’s paid off. They live in this beautiful new home (to us, I think it’s about 8 years old really), with a pool! I never had a pool growing up. We went to the neighborhood pool. At the time it was the best, but looking back at it and remembering… It was actually kind of gross. Too many times we all had to vacate the pool because some kid pooped in it and they had to shock the pool water. Or they heard thunder which meant we had to stay out of the water for 45 minutes – which to a kid, in summer, on a hot sunny day, felt like hours. But overall I think there are good memories there. Except the time I actually almost drowned. Which is a story for another day. I’ve got to get back to my research paper so I can stay ahead of schedule and finish it and not have to stress about it anymore!

If you’ve read this far, you’re awesome.

tl;dr My germ factory nephew got me sick and I feel awful.

New Adventures in the Wild

It’s been some crazy times lately! I’ve been gone for almost a year. COVID-19 quarantining sort of killed any writing creativity that I had. Of course, recently things have changed. I’ve gotten the vaccination shot (which I recommend to anyone who can get it, they should). Mask mandates are being lifted (not sure I completely agree with that). More stores and restaurants are being opened or available for take out. Life is slowly returning back to normal. Or, at least, a new kind of normal.

Right now, I’m visiting family in Florida. The weather today was gorgeous. It was warm, but with a breeze, low humidity and cool in the shade. Even though the high was 91ËšF today!

My sister visited us today with her son – the nephew I’m closest too. It was a good day of riding around in the golf cart, napping, snacking, and visiting with them. It was really a nice day. She’s driving back to her in-law’s now. On our golf cart rides we look for all kinds of wildlife. Yesterday we saw owls and alligators. There weren’t any owls today, just alligators, but there were babies too.

Overall, it was a very good day. I’ll post some pictures, but they might be hard to see in some because of the distance and whether I was using my phone or my camera to take the pictures.

But besides the adventures with wildlife, I am writing to say that I’m back. I might not be posting as regularly, but I will do my best. My class load should lighten up soon!

Another Beginning…

…this one less pleasant.

It’s the start of a new semester. This time I’m taking Abnormal Psychology so it’s something I’ll definitely be interested in. I was interested in ASL too, but the work of it made it less interesting to me if that makes sense. Abnormal psych though is a part of my life so learning more about it shouldn’t be too much of a hardship.

I went online and looked at the ratings of my professor. I’m not so sure it was a good idea. It’s got me super nervous. You know it said all the worst things, lots of work, tests every week, professor doesn’t answer emails (and being an online school that’s definitely a big issue), etc. It’s just got me concerned and I’m trying not to think about it. But it’s hard.

How have you coped with a difficult professor? (If she’s anything like her reviews, I’ll definitely be giving a detailed end of semester survey!)

Technology is not my friend

My ASL 1 class has just started. Since it’s online we meet our professor and other “mentors” (other people who also teach ASL who we practice with) via Skype.

I may have mentioned this before, but technology is not my friend. I can do some things, but a lot is over my head. For example, I just rejoined Facebook as a way to be involved in the Deaf community while in quarantine (thank you COVID-19). There is so much about it that I just don’t understand and don’t know how to do things. I try to stay off it because I don’t want to do the wrong thing somehow and post something or something like that and embarrass myself with it.

Needless to say, Skype is also over my head. I just recently received a 0 because I couldn’t get my Skype to work to contact my mentor with whom I had scheduled the weekly meeting as per instructed. I hate making bad grades. I mean, I hate it. With my anxiety over other things, bad grades on top of it just stresses me out. When I get stressed out, I shut down. I sleep a lot. I don’t do things. I avoid, avoid, avoid. So that’s what’s been happening for me.

I’ve got a new appointment with a mentor scheduled for this week and hopefully I’ll have figured it out and don’t miss it again. Other than my issues with technology, I’m loving the class, learning the new signs and everything. So interesting and the nerd in me says fun too!

Woman’s Best Friend

Cammie now, aged 6

There’s no way to describe the bond between a dog and its owner. This little pup just always wants to be by your side, barks a little when there’s someone in front of the house, and will only eat her food if you’re eating. Now, that may sound like a needy dog, but for a person who was suicidal it’s perfect.

She warns me if someone’s coming to the house so the doorbell or knocking doesn’t send me into a panic attack. She reminds me to eat a meal every now and then because I’m making sure she’s eating. She never lets me feel alone because she’s always with me or if I’m in my room, she’s across the hall watching out the window to the front of the house.

She’s a smart dog. I know all owner’s say that, but it’s true. It doesn’t take long to train her to do something (like not jumping on you when you come in the door, shaking your hand, sitting and laying down with hand signals only).

She’s really the perfect dog for me. With all my mental health issues, she balances them out. When I’m down, she comes and lays with me. When I’m getting into a manic phase, she’s there to help me let out the energy in a safe manner. She seems to know when I want to self-harm and she puts her head in my lap.

If you’ve got problems, if you’re lonely, I highly recommend looking into getting a dog. Make sure you can handle the responsibilities and everything that goes with it – money for vet visits. Get it neutered/spayed. And look from a shelter. Those dogs may feel exactly like you do and just need a home and some love. So if you’ve got love to spare and money and are willing to try, adopt a dog. Cammie is a rescue and I couldn’t be happier.

Doctor’s Appointment Pt. 1

This may be too personal.

As a victim of sexual assault, going to the OBGYN once a year is very difficult. It’s one of the most dreaded days of my life. I don’t know how to explain it really. I just feel like enough people have seen the most intimate part of me, and I don’t want anyone else to see it. If that makes sense…

I have a great doctor though. She believes me when I say I’m not sexually active. She tells me everything that she’s doing before she does it, just to prepare me. But there’s just something about it that every single time makes me cry. And I hate crying. Especially in front of people. Especially if those people are virtual strangers.

But it’s something I have to do whether I want to or not. Like going to the dentist. I hate going to the dentist but still have to go.

I’m posting this now to compare my feelings about going before I go and then I’ll make a post about going after and what the appointment was actually like. My appointment isn’t until later in the week, but it’s already giving me borderline panic attacks.

As I’m typing this, the doctor’s office literally just called to confirm my appointment and my heart rate just went through the roof – just talking on the phone with the doctor’s office. I feel so pathetic.

Expect another post soon…

I’m an aunt!

So yes, a while ago I posted about my sister having a baby boy, almost a year ago. Well, in November I became an aunt again! My brother’s wife had a baby boy as well.

It’s strange to think about how these two little boys came from nothing, to existing, and they’re going to have their own lives. Lives with funny stories, sad stories, stories they’ll never tell their families. It’s just a very strange feeling to realize that there’s a new generation in your family coming up. I’ve always been the baby and things always stopped with me, but now there’s a new generation of little baby boys who are going to become rambunctious and wild and so loved. They’ll be so loved, by their parents, by their aunts and uncles, by their grandparents.

How lucky are they?! To grow up in a family knowing that they’ll be loved no matter what happens, to know that no matter what happens they’ll have family to turn to when they’re hurt or scared?

I have that in my immediate family, but not my extended family. Now that I’m these babies extended family I’m going to make sure they know that they can always come to me with anything and that they’re loved so, so much.

Birth… It really is kind of an amazing thing. A miracle. And I got to witness! I got to see them grow in their mom’s bellies; I saw them the day of their birth. I’ll see them the day they graduate high school. Hopefully I’ll be there to see their first date, but I doubt it. But I’ll definitely get to meet the girlfriends or boyfriends they have. Because no matter their gender identity or they sexual orientation or however is the right way to put it (if I’m wrong, tell me in the comments because I’ve never heard differently and I live in a place where being PC isn’t a big thing), no matter any of that, they’ll be loved and cared for. I want to make sure that they always know that. It doesn’t matter any of that stuff. They’re going to grow up to be good people with a family behind them that would do anything for them.

Because that’s what everyone needs and what everyone deserves from their birth. They’re innocent and pure and it’s the world and the people around them that shape them into good people, or people others dislike. But Jesus tells us to love our neighbors as ourselves. There are no qualifiers on ‘neighbors’ at all. It’s just our neighbors, our fellow people. Humans. We all deserve to be loved, unconditionally.

This started out as a celebration post and turned into a rant. If you’ve read this far, you’re awesome.

tl;dr I now have two nephews to spoil!!

House Hunting

Sounds more fun than it actually is.

In reality, house hunting is stressful. It’s a lot of money to spend. It’s a big investment and because you’re spending all that money you want it to be the perfect house with the perfect yard in the perfect neighborhood in the right area of town (or not if that’s your preference).

I’m learning all this now. There’s something about going into a totally empty house and trying to imagine it filled with your own belongings while a realtor follows you around blathering on about all the pros of the property. When really, all you want is to be left alone to walk around, look at everything and talk about it with the people who came with you — not the person trying to sell the house to you.

I guess you can call it exciting. But it’s also a little sad to leave the place you’re in. It’s filled with your essence, your memories. For me, it’s my parents leaving the house that I grew up in. My whole life is in that one house and it’s going to be left behind and someone else is going to live there and make memories and change it. It’s the definition of bittersweet.

But the truth is, I’m grateful. I’m grateful that they have the opportunity to move someplace that they really love and is something they really want. I’m blessed to have them as role models in my life because they’re pretty good ones.

Besides all of that, it’s actually getting me out of the house once a week to go to the open houses on Sundays. So that’s always good. But even then, I’m hiding behind a camera. The world seems different through a lens, safer almost. It’s like watching it all on TV instead of living it. Circumspect. Circumspect is a good word for the way I feel about it.

Busy Busy Busy Bee

For the past few weeks, my life has been crazy busy. I’ve been gone from home more than being at home. I stayed with my sister and her baby and fell in love with him completely. (not posting pictures for privacy) I may be biased but I think he’s the cutest newborn baby I’ve ever seen. He was absolutely perfect.

While I was there, my school term started! In a matter of days I went from not being a student to applying, being accepted, registering for a class and then it started! I mean, it was less than a week – the whole process. I was amazed. Promo note: If you’re ever looking for an online university that’s a legit university – Troy University is the best. They work with a lot of military so they’ve been doing online for years as well as having an actual brick and mortar university and different campuses. I’m just starting week 3 of my course and I can say that so far the professor an advisors have made my transitioning so easy. They answer questions quickly and thoroughly. It’s just a great university.

Anyway. I’m doing my class, I’m waiting for a specific job opening that would be perfect for me, and currently I’m cleaning out all my stuff, going through everything. So it’s been a busy time, hence the absence on here!

But I love being able to say, “Yes, I’m a student.”

I want to prove my high school teachers who all told me I’d never graduate college wrong, and I want to get my degree. I want to prove that little voice in my head wrong, the one that says I’m worthless and can’t do anything right. I want to show that even people with mental illnesses and PTSD can be successful!

I’m doing it and you can too!