Hobbies.

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I’ve been experimenting with photography lately. There’s not a lot of things to do at a bus stop but there are often things to notice. In this particular day there were flowers from a bush. I’m not sure what kind these are (anyone out there know?) but as soon as I saw them I thought “OH MY GOD A SUBJECT” and broke out the Galaxy S3 (better camera) and started taking shots like mad.

…The next ten minutes were spent in Snapseed, editing the shot until it looked absolutely perfect.

I might need to rethink the “hobbyist” in front of the “shutterbug” in my Instagram profile.

I’ve actually been thinking that, beyond the cooking project I’ve got percolating (see what I did there?) I might be able to do a little something here. It’s not like I don’t have any training at all; I learned everything I know from my late mother, when she saw how excited I was about her old model Polaroid camera (it was the beige kind with the rainbow on it!) and got me the new one for Christmas. Simple stuff really:

• Watch for subjects,
• Make sure you use that square to say something,
• Pay attention to your Bigdaddy [my wonderful grandfather] because this is a lot like hunting

And finally

• sometimes, “because it’s pretty” or ” because I liked it” is a perfect reason.

I then proceeded to take pictures of everything I got for that Christmas. She showed me the “because it’s pretty” trick by arranging my new Game Boy and games and how it made for an even better “LOOK AT THIS” effect than just snapping away. She said it was more “exteticly pleasing.”

(…I was five going on six okay? I was precocious as fuck but I couldn’t wrap my mouth around the word aesthetically just yet. But I knew it meant prettier and arty.)

And yes I also wound up taking pictures of the pictures I took.

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Thank you based Science—anything but a convenience.

Temperature: 55°F. Weather: Mostly Clear.

As usual we begin with a rant

Again, thank you very much, Father, for going back off the deep end and showing me just how callous you can be about things. It’s really telling that you were literally the last person to ask how I was after my procedures.

He didn’t show up to provide a ride, as he’d promised he would; luckily, I had already planned for this eventuality. My aunt also had a total flake moment; she’d sided with his “science is just a convenience and we don’t really need it” remark, and took personal offense that I hadn’t taken her offer of being over her place after the procedures and being there ore. First off, if she’d been where I had gotten my “sit around” ride, she couldn’t have babysat as she’d been doing all day; second, I don’t know the layout of her house; third, most importantly, she doesn’t have a car. The place would not have performed the procedure if I had not had an actual ride.

Both of those would have put me out $200.

Having backup in place weeks in advance wasn’t distrust on my part. It was fucking smart.

Meanwhile in Nowhereland

The procedures went, from what I hear, smoothly. The doctor had me knocked completely the hell out for both of them. I remember a needle of stuff in my IV that made my legs very heavy, followed by being wheeled into the room where the procedures and told to turn on my left side, but hey, what the fuck is movement, and, you know this bed is really feeling like a marshmallow like now?

The next thing I’m aware of I’m back out in the first room, the first doctor asking me how I was feeling.

I had…a lot of nonsensical gibberish there. I had no idea what was going on.

“Need a Coke?”

THAT, I understood. Three minutes into the Coke I understood things again. It was time for the information…

And the Verdict Is—

That I don’t have anything lethal! …that we know of. The doctor calls me with pathology results in two weeks.

That’s the good news!

The bad news is that SOMEFUCKINGHOW, on top of lifelong IBS I’ve acquired a case of GERD that has progressed so far that it has not only inhibited nutritrient absorption and retention in my body (hence the ridiculous weight loss), but also progressed far enough that it’s started wrecking the lower half of my digestive system, which is why the painful brick acid sensation in my guts—and the back spasms I’ve been having have been quieted by the Bentyl because they had nothing to do with my back: yes, it is in fact more of my gut attacking me.

My entire digestive tract has been reduced to one raw, throbbing mass of meat. We can’t call it an ulcer because that would imply a single isolated location of bad. It has no protection and can’t heal on its own. For the next five months I’m going to be on ridiculously strong medications that are going to reduce my stomach to a very, very non-adventurous blob. It’ll take five days for THOSE to kick in.

So far, so good…at least for the next two weeks.

In which I am not particularly productive.

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I can hide behind this blanket all day, yannou.

It should not be this cold out here.

I’ve managed to tell the head doc about my less than stellar approach to the recurring nightmares (DON’T FUCKING SLEEP) and even remembered the name of the med that I borrowed to help.

She seems to want me back in on the SSRIs and atypical antipsychotics, apparently forgetting the interaction between them was what caused my GP to pull rank and take me off of those things. I offered a reminder and noted that the med they were playing badly with had its dose doubled.

Another pill will be added to the mix, and we’ll be checking in again in a month.

Meanwhile, today the all broth diet starts. At least my tastes make it interesting. I’ve got a pork miso soup (no solids allowed, used boullion) ready for “lunch” right now.

This will be hell.

…I can hide behind this blanket all day, yannou.

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I’ve been asked what that nightmare is like. This picture is it.

It’s the realization that no, no one calls or texts that early without something in mind.

The realization that Yes, Virginia, someone you trusted did completely forget to do your taxes, someone you’d booked to do it months in advance, and now instead of getting a time frame and a concrete number of dollars you get “Do you have spares you can give me?”

It’s that insidious guilt trip you get for blowing off hanging out with someone who’s honestly been too toxic to deal with because this time you legitimately are too sick to do anything.
It’s needing to talk, but not knowing if you’ll stay conscious long enough to actually do it.

It’s the every two hours in and out when everyone leaves—or hangs up; it alternates—and the few seconds that I have of being awake and afraid of the realization it was empty in the first place, because I’m just sick and exhausted enough that I’m going to fall back into it right where it left off.

At 6:08 this morning I heard a chime. I should have known it was false when the table beneath made no noise.

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Modern horror show.

I’ve been asked what that nightmare is like. This picture is it.

It’s the realization that no, no one calls or texts that early without something in mind.

The realization that Yes, Virginia, someone you trusted did completely forget to do your taxes, someone you’d booked to do it months in advance, and now instead of getting a time frame and a concrete number of dollars you get “Do you have spares you can give me?”

It’s that insidious guilt trip you get for blowing off hanging out with someone who’s honestly been too toxic to deal with because this time you legitimately are too sick to do anything.
It’s needing to talk, but not knowing if you’ll stay conscious long enough to actually do it.

It’s the every two hours in and out when everyone leaves—or hangs up; it alternates—and the few seconds that I have of being awake and afraid of the realization it was empty in the first place, because I’m just sick and exhausted enough that I’m going to fall back into it right where it left off.

At 6:08 this morning I heard a chime. I should have known it was false when the table beneath made no noise.

Washed out on the way to the work shift.

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They always happen after I’ve been left or ditched—the nightmares, that is—and getting back to sleep is a trial because I tend to fall back into them.

This time it was a combination of the ditch and the almost aggressive way I’m misgendered at work. No matter what I do it’s in one ear and out the other.

These things always leave me dizzy and exhausted. I’m not sure my “breakfast”—a double espresso used to shoot my meds—will do much against it.

And now I get to pull a mad long shift…

Weighing (literally) the pros and cons of the meal.

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Hold on to me tightly, I'm a sliding scale

So I’ve noticed that the worst of my stomach isn’t what I eat, it’s the physical weight of it. So in addition to the food tracking app I use I’ve been weighing everything I eat.

No, I’m not backsliding.

I’m making sure I get enough in me before my gut declares “HAHA FUCK YOU” and puts me out for several hours.

Again.

The interesting thing about the tracking app is when I logged on, I got a pop up.

WHAT ARE YOU DOING YOU NEED TO EAT THERE’S LIKE 1200 CALORIES YOU HAVEN’T GOTTEN INTO YOUR SYSTEM TO JUST KEEP ALIVE YOU IDIOT! GO EAT, YOU FOOL!*

*Paraphrasing. Of course an app called My Fitness Pal wouldn’t launch at me like that.

So I’ve very carefully crafted a smaller, lighter version of one of my more famous sandwiches to eat. Not bad on timing: there’s meds coming.

The morning call off was well decided. They may have sent me back to the ER. And I would not have blamed them. The interesting fact I got out of today was that you can drink a 17 oz iced coffee and if you’re going to faint or pass out, it’ll give you just enough time to say “You know, I’ve think I need a second to lie down” but not enough to actually do it right. You thud. Quite inelegantly.

It feels like falling asleep backwards. You went down too fast, and it’s like the blinds are going up but letting in darkness instead. A creeping exhaustion sets in, and you either you panic, or there’s this strange sense of relief.

You don’t come to like you do from sleep. There is nothing but confusion. Where am I? What day? Did I oversleep?

I missed most of my meals in that blank out. But I’m making sure I eat now. My alarms are set and I’m making sure I get my strength back.

Oh… And if y’all DO catch me backsliding, permission to hit me upsides my fool head granted.