seventhe: (Cats: I LIKE THEM)

...or some other shittastic ~~pensive~~ title because I'm so fucking out of goddamn fucks already it's the 14th half of january is gone jesus christ stop fucking moving so fast i would like off this ride thanks

I like the organization of "new year resolutions" not really because I believe you need to wait for a calendar year to make serious changes, but because there's something very neat about the way things can slot into having to write a new date on all your sign-offs and checks do people still use checks? i only have to sign them at work and lists and notes; to the excel spreadsheet that is my mind1, I like the way aligning change with change sorts itself.

This year I am returning to quantifiable goals in some ways, since the general vagueness of "do X more" may be more friendly but does not truly work in the lifestyle I have at the moment. I wanted to do a deep introspective post as a lead in but fuck that, I already have two truly severe horror stories about 20172 and it's the 14th, but I feel like I want to make a statement about the year before I devolve back into bitchcraft and wizardry.

As another change this year, I am looking for friends to help keep me accountable to these things. I've already roped and wrangled a couple people along with me, but if you have similar goals, let's discuss ways we can shame uh motivate SHAME each other into proceeding, or mainly just me, I require someone to - not compete with, but to keep up with, in a way, anyway, I am terrible so do stop.

So here is a list of my intentions for what I have labeled 12/52/365/20173:

  1. Health. Rather than breaking this down into a tale of my woes and triggering an actual breakdown I will instead list the targets:

    • Get more than 4.5 hours of (good, deep, REM) sleep on average. According to my Fitbit, my average in 2016 was below 4.5 hours4. This involves a lot of things, including going to bed earlier and somehow figuring out how robots relax.
    • Working out. My goal for working out is to visit the gym - or otherwise work out - on at least 1/3 of the days of 2017: 122/365/2017. 122 visits. This is 2-3 workouts a week on average which should be doable for someone with fibro, assuming I keep them reasonable.
    • General. Continue stocking and making healthy food at home. Drink less at home5. Go back to packing lunches for work.
    • Weight/Size. Due to medication changes, 3 surgeries, and a major job change with severely increased my responsibilities, I gained 25-30 lb in 2017, putting me into the beginnings of an unhealthy place I don't want to be6. It's also fairly annoying to be at the upper limit of most of my clothing, to be frank. My goal is to use the above 3 points to try to lose 25+ pounds in 2017, OR return to the range of a size 8-107 where my clothing lives. 25/2017. A half a pound a week will do.
  2. Writing. [personal profile] lassarina is my partner here; we have pledged to write a fic a week of at least 100 words using a list of prompts we gathered earlier. (Of course, I am already behind, although I plan to work on that immediately after this entry.) 52/2017. The hope, of course, is that writing small things helps to spur the writing of larger things. They will be posted on AO3 and linked from here.

    • subgoal: at least 1 entry a week on DW (52/2017), and 1 entry a week on my secret business blog which I will share once I have some substance (52/2017).
  3. Art. [personal profile] justira is my partner here; we have, quite hilariously, pledged to draw a thing a day. For Ira, those things may be recognizable as art; for me, I reserve the right to draw a shit doodle with my finger on my iPhone, as long as it is a drawing of some sort. They'll be posted right here at the Feymarch Library where most of my art shame lives.

  4. Home. Of course I have big statements to make about the first floor remodel I want to do, but honestly this is about habits, so my 2017 goal is to declutter my life. Every day I will do at least 1 chore dedicated to decluttering my home8 or otherwise making my life easier (cooking a big meal for the week, etc).

  5. Mental. A few mantras I am focusing on:

    • Allow hobbies to be chores. This sounds counter-intuitive, but last year I got away from a lot of hobbies I love because I had "so much other shit to do" that was more important in my mind. This year, writing, art, knitting, gaming, reading; these are allowed to be chores I can give priority to. It's okay to write if I still have dishes to do.
    • Recharge your battery. If I have a night where I am truly in too much pain to do anything, I need to stop whining and griping about that, and instead focus on my own comfort and recovery, because self-care is allowed to be a priority, also.
    • Ground myself. I'm not a nice person by default9 so making a pledge to share the love or be kinder doesn't really mean anything to me; but I believe I can eliminate some of the negative energy by grounding myself more and letting it just pass on into the neutral environment rather than building up a static charge.
    • Be more of who you are. I lost my way at work somewhat this year faced with a gigantic new challenge with no lessening of my previous responsibilities, interpersonal conflicts, and some sporadic and questionable criticism. Moving forward I need to remember who the fuck I am and be that lady as hard as possible, because that's where I am awesomest.
    • Allow myself to unplug. I don't have to be tied to my phone - not just for work, but texting with friends or playing stamina games. I can leave it in the corner and just be for an evening.
  6. Work. I need to focus on managing more: I am a manager, not a contributor, and I need to focus more on leading and guiding people in big-picture ways towards improvement. Too many people list me as a project leader or member, when I should not be a worker on anyone's project - and this is what makes my job so unmanageable. It isn't just me letting go; I need to make it clear to others that there should be more than one person who knows how to do the things I do.

  7. Family & Friends.

    • See my nieces at least once a month. See my parents at least once a quarter.
    • Continue to work with my partner on this great relationship we have developed. Learn to ask him for help more, and learn where his boundaries are for asking help. Show love and appreciation better. Develop a good schedule for spending more time together - we are both very obviously happier and healthier when we do.
    • Try to visit someone or travel at least once a quarter -- traveling is really costly to me in terms of energy, but I have broken through some of my traveling-and-health fears last year (Japan!) so it would be cool to travel a bit with friends when the opportunity is there.
    • Stay in touch: post, email, text. Reach out in new areas.

Seven is my lucky number. That's 2017.


1 (mind palace?? nothing so fancy; my brain is a four-dimensional fully-formulated spreadsheet archive with tabs, complete with charts, graphs, and little programs that sort by categories and make a smiley face out of pixels.)

2 the first, about my fucking furnace; the second, about my fucking supervisor. stay tuned for more great literature on what makes my life a goddamned shitshow shitcom!

3 because I want to quantify it and report on things, see, like the project manager i am

4 Now, the reason I am not dead is because there is also some restless sleep in there, but the problem is twofold: (a) i only get 4.5 fucking hours of the good sleep (b) the good sleep comes in 30-45 minute spurts which is nowhere near what's needed for mental recovery (c) for fibromyalgia one of the most productive and healing things you can do is get REM sleep.

5 lolololoLLOLOLOLLOOLLOOLOLOLLLLLLLLLLL

6 lots of family history of pre-diabetes; I've already noticed my hypoglycemia and blood sugar problems are getting worse. I realize this isn't always correlated to weight but as there is some data pointing that way (scientific as well as family), I want to be sure to avoid it, because dude if you stack fuckin diabetes on top of this stack of medical bullshit I may just ravine myself

7 since women's sizes can never make up their damn minds

8 on bad days this might actually be something like "put dishes in dishwasher" but let's face it sometimes even that doesn't happen

9 nothing against anyone, I'm just kind of sociopathic and hate people in general; i've learnt to "play nice" and I can and do feel love for specific people, but i'm really just not friendly

seventhe: (Cats: I LIKE THEM)
This just in: still alive.

I'm not even going to get into work here because the things people have done to me and the things I have done to people in the last six weeks belong in a horror film. One about fire and brimstone and lots and lots of swears.

More importantly, I finally got in to see the rheumatologist. I'd delayed calling because I am a busy and forgetful fuck, and then when I called there was a 6-8 week lead time on appointments, but I've finally been in to see an expert. Diagnosis re-confirmed, it's fibromyalgia. There's also some general autoimmune-disease stuff going on in there, but Fibro is an absolute.

(With fibro, there are these "trigger tender points" that are part of the diagnosis process: for people with fibro there are certain points on the body where the nerves are hypersensitive, so a normal touch feels like someone punching you directly on a bruise. Things I wasn't prepared for. The doctor was doing his check-over and hit the one on the knee and I screamed. I've always just thought bodies were sensitive there. Things I wish I'd known years ago.)

So I'm being taken off the escitalopram (anxiety med) and put on Cymbalta. The Cymbalta should be able to take the place of the Lexapro with regards to anxiety, and additionally will help deal with the fibro pain and sensations. I do get to keep my trazodone -- you can pry that sleeping pill from my cold dead fingers.

I'm on a starter dose for now, which will be increased if/as needed, and if Cymbalta doesn't work Lyrica's next.

As part of the prescription, I've also been "prescribed" exercise. The doctor says that mild (no strenuous weightlifting or sprinting intervals) exercise will help the fibro and, even though it hurts, will also help the Cymbalta work -- basically adding some exercise activity will give the drug the best chance to be effective as time goes on. As I would really like (one of) these drugs to be successful, I'm going to go back to the gym and just be gentle with myself until/as the drugs start to work, and then go from there. I'm thinking of restarting yoga in addition to that.

I am sure it won't be easy, and adding something else to my to-do list and daily schedule is moving in the absolute wrong direction, but I'm at the point where I've needed a reminder that my health is important even though it's complicated to care for.
seventhe: (Rosa/Rydia: duality)
  • Apparently my new sleeping pills work so well that this week I've managed to pull my flat sheet out of the bed/mattress entirely; it sort of flops out from under my blanket and comforter (neither of which I need in Ohio's quest to become Louisiana) like a sad detached piece of fabric, drooping towards the floor and doing me absolutely no good at all. I am not complaining; I am not sure I have ever slept this well in my life. Is this how everyone sleeps? I am so envious - and so happy to be getting there via drug :D

  • My first three days in the new job have been... incredible. I mean that in a good way and a bad way. Each day has actually been packed with the feeling of being productive: being useful, being effective, being efficient; I'm already making small changes and contributing to things in a way I think we've needed for a very long time. I love that part. That being said: I've already got two HR issues - one being one of my guys; one being someone not technically under me but as it relates to something I need to sign off on, it's also mine - and I've spent the past three days literally not having more than 15 mins uninterrupted at my desk (in my new! office!!!!!!) between phone calls and visitors and meetings, oh god the meetings, and shit I have to take care of and deal with and uuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuugh.
    I get the feeling that this job will be much more exhausting and much more fulfilling than my old job. Thank the lord I have sleeping pills. I cannot imagine taking this shit on with insomnia.

  • I went to PT today and then went for a 30min run/walk at the gym. Spoiler alert: That is too much activity when your body ain't used to doing anything. My neck and back hurt from PT; my legs hurt from running and I am tired as hell. (my body is crying, druuuuuuuuuuuuuug me) I am so fucking goddamn out of shape. :( I love the fact that I can get in the pool and swim for 30 mins and get out of the pool raring for more, saying to myself, "You shouldn't overdo it, ~1300 yards in 30mins is a good workout, don't break yourself further, take it easy" -- and I cannot run more than, like, 5 mins without needing a walking break. I now run like an 80-year-old woman. Hello, I would like to return this body and upgrade to a newer model, please.

  • Have I mentioned I love my night pills? I love my night pills.

  • In the last ~month I have been both home and home on time less than 50% of the days: it's more like 33%. I am so sick of people. Next weekend I may lock myself in the basement and not come out.

  • Happy 4th of July, American yos. Enjoy some awesome fucking fireworks.
seventhe: (Ondore: he lies)
This has been a particularly busy and interesting day. I had one simple checkup this morning but it blossomed into an all-day medical ~extravaganza~ ( /rupaul voice) that I'm simultaneously hopeful about, exhausted from, and dreading the slew of medical bills.

Today I had a checkup and discussion with my pain doctor, went to get a slew of x-rays on my lumbar spine and sacroiliac joint, went to my general doctor, got a major new prescription, and am having like a dozen blood tests done tomorrow. Anything worth doing is worth overdoing. When I do something I do it thoroughly. I hope today results in some answers.

cut for medical talk )
seventhe: (FFEX: In the shadows)
I don't know what it is about being alone that makes me want to clean -- not just clean, I guess, but organize: re-organize, re-do. Unfuck. I really don't know why this mood can't hit me more often, and what it is about somebody else in the house that just mental-blocks me from having the motivation to go through the year's bills and sort them -- which is what I'm doing, with assistance from the world's floofiest and "most unloved" cat -- but there's something there. Who knows! I've got Ellie Goulding on and I'm sorting through things in my room and on my desk and feeling awesomely productive. My goal is to have my desk totally revamped and my computer set up by the time Becky gets back. We'll see.

solitude... and no plans... makes a Sev very happy.

The snap, crackle, and pop is brought to you by my lungs: that's the noise they're making every time I breathe in and breathe out. It's quite foul. And scary. Enough people have told me that I look/sound horrible and that I'm going to end up in the hospital soon that... I think I'm deluding myself as to how sick I actually am, just because other parts of me feel "okay".

I'm spending this entire weekend inside, and will be spending much of it in bed or otherwise resting -- today's spurt of activity surely won't last, and I really, really, really want to be over this by Monday.

So I'm spending a weekend alone in my apartment, being productive and resting in equal measure.

This is awesome. Yay introvert's happiness level.
seventhe: (Rydia: calls the monsters)
Turns out I've got a herniated disc in my neck. My C5-C6 has been janked out of alignment with the rest of my spine. Because it's herniated/bulged, it's pinching the nerves around it, which accounts for the pain radiating out of the spot (into my neck/back/shoulders).

I'm oddly--- relieved? about the whole thing. It's not that a herniated C5-C6 is great - it's not - especially when you're 30 and arthritic it's really not - but it's an actual diagnosis. Based on data, rather than "I think it's this" or "from the way you describe the pain, this" (who knows if I'm saying the right things?). Based on data. I'm a research engineer to the core.

I actually don't have a lot more information than that. I've been referred to a neurosurgeon who will take a look at the MRI and give me some more detail (my GP basically said the neuro could give me far more understanding of what was going on than he could) (also, of course, there's some kind of weirdness in the MRI (can anything about me ever be normal please), because the report said "herniated disc versus a bulged disc", which will need to be clarified with a neurosurgeon specifically). After that I'll have more details and the beginnings of a path forward.

Also I fucking passed out in the doctor's office because I don't know why. This has already kind of been an emotionally stressful week (month) (year) due to some assorted 'other stuff' and maybe I'm just more worked up about my body than I realized? Or just general stress/relief/shock...? I don't even fucking know. I felt totally fine. Then I was standing at the check out station waiting for my referral and I started to feel all flushed and skitty, started to feel that awful head rush coming on like I do when I black out (this has, unfortunately, happened enough that I'm 'used to it' and can recognize the signs); so I said to the nurse, I need to sit down like right now and she gave me her chair and I sort of made my way into it (had blacked out at this point but fumbled my way over there with some help) and apparently just passed out in her chair? Came up a couple [moments?] later, and of course when you KO in the doctor's office, holy shit. They took me over to another room to lie down and I had a blood sugar test and an EKG and a bunch of other shit and they gave me a lollipop and eventually pronounced I was fine (I kept saying, this happens enough that I'm pretty sure I'm okay, and the looks the nurses gave me like, uh, what? were awful and hilarious).

I don't even fucking know; I took the rest of the day off too and sulked in bed and accidentally a 2 hour nap with Marzy to ward off the splitting headaches I usually get when I pass out.

I. D. E. F. K.

So yeah, that's that. It's really gross right now in my head -- usually I do a ton of research on medical stuff (when I am on a prescription I always look it up in detail, even if it's a fucking antibiotic) but I can't even bring myself to read a lot of the stuff about herniated discs because I'm just like, ew, oh god that's in my neck. I swear I feel it more - like, it hurts more - now that I know what it is, which is great. Vicodin already doesn't really work; just what I need, more body weirdness. I'm so fucking depressed I'm at the point where it's easy to pretend I'm not depressed because I don't have any feelings right now, I'm a big blank empty sack, so it's pretty easy to fill it up with fake "I'm okay"s. askdja;lsdk;alskd;alsk;;;;;;;;;

So we'll go from there. The doctor said I don't have to limit any of my activity - he basically said, "The damage is already done; activity is up to your discretion; if it doesn't hurt, and you feel okay, you can do it" - so maybe I can just move forward here.

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