I am taking a minute to breathe. I felt my anxiety creeping up and I had to take a moment to squeeze it back down. It is kind of like those yogurt tubes my kids eat. If there is too much pressure the whole thing comes out of the top instead of just what you can handle.

It’s Monday again. School is back in session so that means I am up before the sun laying out clothes and packing lunches. In an hour I will awaken my two sleeping angels, who will then stumble around like zombies until that final dash to the car.

I have fed the cats, given the kitten his antibiotic and eye drops, as well as clean the litter boxes. (The kitten, Max, is a stray we took in. He has eye problems that have caused him to lose one eye and he will probably lose the other as well.)

My son has dress up week. Today is wacky Monday. He can wear odd clothes, put his shirt on backwards and wear mix matched socks. (I am glad this one falls on Monday.) Later in the week he has to dress like he is from the 1940’s. So I have to figure out how to dress him up like my grandfather.

(I remember my grandfather in plain white t-shirts and work pants. Somehow, I don’t think that is what the school is going for. My papaw wore suits or overalls. I don’t think either of those would go over well with my son.)

He also has his first fund raiser this week. I am broke until Friday but for some reason these people always seem to end fund raisers on Thursdays. It will be a week of begging my co-workers to support the school. Unfortunately, most of them are broke until Friday as well.

My daughter is in her first year of middle school. There are three posts worth of problems and drama to go along with that. I spend two hours every afternoon in school lines to pick up the kids. I’ve started taking my novel with me so I can write edit notes while I wait.

My dinning room table is covered with bits of novel, mail, my daughter’s drawings, pieces of newspaper, school work, and forms to fill out and/or sign. It can be a bit much. Faced with it this morning, I felt like hyperventilating. I need to clear it off, not just put a random box in the middle so the cats will quit knocking papers to the floor. (It works. They sit in the box and leave the rest alone.)

But for right now I am just going to take a deep breath and just breathe for a minute before jumping back in.



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Work Weary

This is my second attempt at a post today. My first go was right after work and a trip to the grocery store. I sat at the computer for twenty minutes with glazed eyes and decided I would give it another shot later.

So now is later. I still don’t have a specific subject to write about. My caffeine levels are low. I heard thunder a few minutes ago an mistook it for the guy across the street revving his car engine again. A quick glance out of the window revealed my mistake.

This work week has been a tough one. They all seem to be tough ones recently, but so far this one is at the top of the pile. I don’t have many days where the gear shift falls apart in my hand as I pull into the parking lot. I think the car was trying to protect me in its own way. It was a silent cry of “No! You don’t want to go in there!”

I can’t pinpoint what is exactly so bad about going to work recently. I mean there are busy tough days but that is nothing new. Crazies, shoplifters, and needy customers aren’t stranger than normal either. I am just so tired. It is like every bit of energy is sucked right out as soon as I step through those sliding doors.

I once joked that the black balls on the ceiling, that hide the security cameras, were really orbs that sucked souls and that was how the building was powered because the power rarely goes out. The entire street can be bathed in black but out lights will still be shining bright. How else was that possible unless the store was using the employees as a generator?

I am beginning to wonder if I didn’t accidentally joke about the truth. I just feel so weary. Even when I wake up I feel tired. It takes longer and longer to bounce back on my week off. I used to be out of it on Wednesday and by Thursday I was mostly back to normal. Now it is Sunday or sometimes even Monday. Then I go back to work on Wednesday and it all goes down hill again.

Sigh. It maybe because it has been hard to have a regular life outside of work. I used to be able to spend a couple of hours before work relaxing and spending time with the kids. Lately it takes forever to go to sleep so I don’t get to wake up as early. I am too tired to sleep and more tired afterwards.

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Children Teach Your Parents Well

Monday evening I took my 12yr old daughter to Middle School Orientation. Afterward, we talked about stopping by the pet store and I learned a lesson in humility.

One of the wild cats, that live in the small wood between our house and the neighbors, had kittens. I often leave food on the porch for the gold bob tail cat (Genjo) that adopted us, and this mother cat saw this as a good opportunity for free food. (Three babies are a lot of mouths to feed.) Not more than a kitten herself, the black mama cat brought her babies closer and not long after we began seeing three little black kittens on the front porch. Two had tails, one did not.

(Genjo and I had a chat about this but he was unimpressed. He doesn’t mind sharing his food bowl with the kittens though. He even lets them cuddle under his chin to eat. He takes a bite, then they take a bite. Odd behavior for a Tom, but he has always been sweet.)

Soon however, I began noticing a problem. The kittens had allergies or something in their eyes. (WARNING: .If you are eating or drinking, or have a soft stomach I would advise reading this post later or skipping the next couple of paragraphs.) Their little blue eyes oozed white stuff. A day later their eyes were matted crusty shut. One seemed unaffected, one seemed mildly okay, but the little bob tail kitten couldn’t see at all. The bobtail was also the only kitten that allowed us to pick him up.

So we gently bathed his eyes with a warm wet paper towel and wiped away the gunk covering his eyes. He could see again and ran off with his mama and siblings. The next day he was in the same shape and we had to do it again. Then we didn’t see him for a day and it got worse. More white stuff oozed out of his eyes when we cleaned the top layer off. He was more often found alone on the porch than with the others in the grass. I began to fear he wasn’t going to make it and tired to prepare for the worst.

(Okay you can read now. I will keep the gross lite.)

Then Monday evening came around and we thought about going to the pet store to see if there was anything that could help. The problem was, of course, money. I just spent the weekend getting the kids ready for school, the cable bill was past due, and I had another week before pay day.

As we sat in the parking lot of the pet store and I weighed my monetary obligations, my daughter spoke up. “But the kitten could die! Isn’t that more important?!”

It was one of those moments they show in the movies where the character’s voice echoes. Her voice echoed its way right past my heart and hit me in the soul. Was I really considering that T.V. and internet were more important that a life? Was I really weighing money on a scale with a kitten’s life on the other side?  I thought about how its tiny body felt in my hand as I wiped its eyes, and the way it had bounced around when it could see again. I felt lower than gum melted on the sidewalk.

We got out of the car and went into the store. There were a few things that might help so we bought them. For the past three days I have wiped the kitten down with kitten wipes and he seems to be doing better. This morning I had to do the same to his sibling. My mom is looking for places that might take them in and help. It the mean time we will keep on what we are doing and pray that it is enough.

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Welcome To August

My weekend was busy. I spent it getting the kids ready for school, which starts back at the end of this week. Tonight we have orientation at the middle school and Thursday at the elementary school. School officially starts on Friday, for two whole hours. Then the kids are off for the weekend where they will forget whatever they were told and have to be retold on Monday.
My energy levels are none existent today but my son’s are over flowing. My daughter is hiding in her room. I have to find another market for a short story. I received the rejection letter yesterday. I just don’t know if I have the spare brain power for it.

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Meetings, Bills, and Doughnuts

Monday, Monday. The fact that I remember what day it is should be cause for rejoicing.  The fact that I also remembered to post should mean balloons, a parade, and cake. Sadly, as I look out my window, I see none of those things.

We did have doughnuts at a meeting at work, but I had to stay after work for the meeting so that kind of took the joy out it. I still devoured a couple of glazed confections but the meeting left me glassy eyed. (Coming off of a twelve hour shift that isn’t hard to accomplish.)

After the meeting ended, instead of coming directly home, I had to run by the electric company and have a chat with them. My water bill had bi-polar. One month it was normal and reasonable then suddenly it jumped to extremes.

The people I spoke with were very nice. They are looking into the problem and in the mean time reimbursing me for some of the bill and for when I had problem with the toilet constantly running way back in March. I was surprised. I had no clue they took leaks and such into account.

It is time for me to go to bed. I am feeling a bit punch drunk and I am spending more time starring at the computer than typing.  Tomorrow I have to stop by my insurance company to discuss my home and auto insurance.

I stopped by today, after the electric company, but their computers were down. I am trying to find a way to save a little money.  I used to have my home and auto bundled together and I am looking to do it again. Separating them was a mistake.

:) All of this taking care of things makes me feel like a real grown up.

I’m not really, you know. I’m just good at faking it when the need arises. Now if I can just pull the act off when I meet the kids’ teachers for the first time next week…

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A word about depression

I woke up this morning from nightmares. As I lay there watching the shadows cast by the labyrinth-handsfan and what little light shone under the door, I came to a revelation. I have been depressed.

I have anxiety depression. I know this. It is a fact of life. I take a little blue pill every morning after breakfast to help with it. Yet I still fall into that quagmire of dingy gray without realizing it. The world loses color, I sleep too much, and everyday activities take a herculean amount of effort.

Looking back I can kind of notice where the slide began this time. The multiple days of rain haven’t help matters either. Neither has sinus trouble and a sick child.

The ascent out of my gray world began yesterday when I sat on the porch for an hour and read the newspaper. (You would think that reading tales of drug dealers and politicians would make me more depressed.) That one hour out of the house and in the sunshine did something.

I am sure it had something to do with vitamin levels and such. But I prefer to think that a bit of that sunlight managed to trickle down to me where I was trapped and wrapped in gray bindings. That while I slept last night I was able to use that trickle of sunlight as a rope to climb up.

I am not completely out of the hole yet but I can see top. And from where I am in my climb I can look back on that dingy gray world and say: Oh. I was depressed. 


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A blog to check out

I met Ernest Dempsey at Liberty con and have been following his blog. I thought I would share this post. http://ernestdempsey.net/lost-socks/

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