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Oki Cars, Comic-Con, and Island Life Laments

Current Mood:busy emoticon busy

Current Music: the kids playing Paper Mario on my Nintendo 64

The last week or so have been a bit of a blur, but after having first my car, then my husband’s taken in for repairs, we finally have two cars again. Hallelujah! Except now, I’m seeing roaches in my car from time to time. (Thank God they are not huge…yet.) Apparently that’s totally a normal occurrence on this tropical island “paradise”. So, traps have been bought and placed and a cleaning company is coming out next week to do an interior detailing to make sure we’ve gotten up every single possible food source. I will have to ban the kids from eating in the car, which is not going to be an easy task with as much as we’re on the go. Sigh. If it’s not one thing, it’s another I swear. Adulting is overrated. I’m ready to go back to the days of hibernating in my room for hours, playing Sims 2 and only taking breaks for instant ramen and diet soda refills. If only.

Went to the base-sponsored Comic-Con yesterday with the family. We only saw the vendor hall and bought some nifty artwork (like Star Wars prints signed by comic book artist Michael Golden!) and such before the kids began to melt down in the heat. We didn’t make it to any of the meet and greets or panels or anything like that, but it was the first con any of us have ever been to, and it was a free event, so I’m not going to complain too much about getting to experience at least a glimpse of what it’s like to attend a con. I would love to go to a bigger con once we’re back Stateside and the kids are all old enough to enjoy it without being bored to tears during discussions and waiting in line – or maybe just take the eldest ones at first. Anya is already talking about us cosplaying as Sailor Moon and Mini-Moon, so that expectation has now been set. Haha! I’m totally down; I’ve dreamed of cosplaying Sailor Moon for literally decades, though which Scout I wanted to be changed here and there. In fact, I’ve never been able to cosplay at all and would love to check that off the bucket list. It would be fun to not only get to finally do it, but to also share it with my daughter who is becoming quite the Sailor Moon fanatic herself.

I’ve been busy just trying to accomplish some normal life tasks. This week will be my last in the poetry course, and then I’ll have a one week break before the Shakespeare course begins. Thankfully, my mental clarity seems to be returning. I think the anxiety of dealing with medical staff and the unknown of my physical ailments was really getting to me and causing a massive amount of anxiety. I’ve kind of resigned myself to my fate of just having to ride out the physical symptoms until we move again, that medical here will never actually care to figure it out and will always be looking for the easy out of blaming it on my mental health. I informed them I’m not taking the SSRI’s they prescribed and am waiting for the behavioral health referral to come through that will probably never end in an appointment because things just get so lost in the shuffle of endless wait lists out here. Otherwise they haven’t prompted for any further testing or appointments, so I’m just avoiding them and not bothering anymore. Just removing the stress of trying to deal with them and having my hopes and expectations dashed repeatedly has helped tremendously, though all of the physical pain and issues are still present. I just power through it, as usual, and try my best to implement what self care I can to counteract it a bit.

I don’t think I’ll be able to return to dance, which is frustrating, but unless medical magically decides to actually get to the root cause of things, I don’t know that I can power through that level of physical activity, not to mention the risk of injury without knowing why my joints, muscles, and bones constantly ache and sometimes refuse to complete certain movements. I’ll have to do some soul searching about it. The studio sometimes requires a level of intensity I just don’t know that I can even attempt to live up to right now, and I don’t want to take away from the efforts of the girls there trying to maintain a professional standard for the teams and future endeavors. Maybe it’s just something that has to be shelved for now, until I can be home with family to help with the kids and can try to participate in theatre, which is really the dream anyway. I’m perfectly content to be in the background of endless community theatre musical numbers, happy just to get to be on stage singing and dancing and being a part of it. Just something else to look forward to when our time here comes to a close. Trying not to wish the years away…but I’m so over Okinawa life and the limitations that come with it.

The Crystal Calls

Current Mood:nerdy emoticon nerdy

Current Music: “Sucker” Jonas Brothers

Not really sure what I even want to write about today; I just feel like I need to. It’s so nice to know this place is here, back to its original purpose as my online journal. There isn’t much I’m afraid of sharing with the world, though I know the people who actually read these more mundane, day-to-day posts are fewer than those who make their way here to read up on homeschooling or autism, which definitely takes some of the pressure off. Sometimes my ramblings will be significantly less entertaining than others. Such is life.

Since my last updates about the situation here, my doctor’s office sent me an online message pretty much confirming my fears that they think my chronic pain and related issues are mental in origin. I’m not really sure where to go from here, but I think I’m going to ask to switch doctors or get in touch with the patient advocacy office and go from there. It’s odd because some days I start to doubt myself; the days I can really take it easy and just do things I enjoy but don’t require as much mental power or physicality. But then I have to stand in the kitchen long enough to cook or bend down to get the laundry out of the dryer, and my back is on fire within minutes and my hips ache severely enough I have to sit down the rest of the evening. If I go to the grocery store, I’m done for the rest of the day from the leg pain. My hands ache all the time, whether I’m using them or not. When I have to work on things for school, the brain fog is so much more apparent; I just cannot put the pieces together, especially not the way I used to, but really I struggle to do it at all and spend days working on small assignments. I just keep powering through and hope the day doesn’t come that I really just can’t anymore.

On a happier note, I have been having an absolute blast watching the new Dark Crystal series on Netflix. Highly recommend! They did an amazing job; it is visually stunning, and the story keeps you engaged, laughing and crying along with the characters as their circumstances change. I got emotional during almost every episode, and I would definitely say the creators succeeded in making me forget I was watching puppets. If you’ve never seen the film, they also have it available for streaming, so get to it! If you have kids who are a bit jumpier or freaked out by dark imagery…maybe prescreen it before you let them watch it, if you let them watch it. My kids are super sensitive to anything visual that could be deemed creepy or scary, so I only asked Anya about it because I knew it would be too much for the others. As I expected, she opted to wait until she is older to watch it, as she knows that even at almost 10 she just can’t handle the visuals yet based on some of the examples I explained to her verbally. At least she is mature enough to know her own limits. I look forward to the day she’s ready to watch the film and the new prequel series together.

The number of fantastic female leads was fun to watch, and the voice cast is just full of so much talent. I think my favorite characters were Deet and Brea, but I won’t share too much more than that to avoid spoiling things for those of you who would like to watch it yourself and haven’t had a chance yet. The designs are beautiful, and I could watch hours and hours of more of this series with these characters in their dramatic fantasy landscapes. In my opinion, they did Jim Hensen’s legacy proud. It met my expectations and then some. I don’t know what I can possibly watch that would match up now that it’s over! Maybe time to go rewatch Labyrinth

Heavy Thoughts from a Rough Morning

Current Mood:exhausted emoticon exhausted

Current Music: “Survivor” by 浜崎あゆみ

It feels so weird and yet so right to be blogging in a diary/journal format again. I held back from posting yesterday, still in the habit of posting snippets on Facebook instead. I’d really like to move away from that some, I think. Social media feels so fake and contrite these days. I’ll obviously still use it, posting Instagram photos and sharing memes and infographics; it’s what I do. But I’m glad to have a little extra space to sort my thoughts and type them out into the abyss, whether anyone else reads much of it or not.

I’m struggling a bit today. Whatever mysterious chronic malady plagues me is seriously affecting my day-to-day ability to function, some days worse than others. Today is one of the worse days. I woke up and had to stay in bed for about an hour, which has become pretty normal, but today my limbs felt especially achy and heavy. My head felt even foggier and groggier than typical; I ended up falling back asleep for a bit which is unusual for me. I’m finally able to get up and move around now, ignoring the constant pain in my arms, legs, hands, feet, hips, and back…basically my entire body. The brain fog is killing me, though. I made it through some reading with the kiddos, enough that they could move on to either playing or their independent work, depending on the kid. I have to rally at some point to make it through my own homework, as I have an assignment due this evening.

It’s really discouraging to know my options for getting medical help may be next to nothing. Right now, they just want me to take an SSRI (fluoxetine/Prozac) and wait for the referral to go through to see a mental health counselor on base. It’s pretty clear to me that they think my illness stems from anxiety and depression, rather than the other way around. Ironically, before my health started to degrade, I was in the best place mental health-wise that I’ve ever been in in my life – since I became a teenager, at the very least. I was feeling so sure of myself and ready to actually live instead of constantly worrying about society’s expectations or continuing to make myself small to please others. It was amazing. The physical problems took me by surprise and began to worsen exponentially about 6 months ago; I rarely have days where I feel remotely decent now. I’m always run down, in pain, and having trouble processing information that once came to me as easily as breathing. It’s infuriating that I’m being brushed off by the medical staff here, and it’s terrifying to feel like there is absolutely nothing I can do to stop the decline in my mental and physical abilities. We are not scheduled to move again for another year and a half, at least. I don’t know how I’m going to make it that long.

I’m afraid to even message my doctors and confess that I haven’t been taking the meds. (I insisted I wanted to be seeing a therapist first, but somehow they took that to mean I was cool with meds as long as I did eventually also see a counselor. By the end of that appointment, I was so beaten down and upset I couldn’t fight for myself anymore. I just nodded, smiled, and took the prescription home.) There are so many tests that haven’t been run that would make sense to try with my symptoms, but every time I go in suggesting something I feel like it just feeds their theories that I’m a hypochondriac. It’s a very trapped feeling to not be able to take control of my own health because doing so immediately makes doctors assume I am not actually in control of my faculties. This system is so horribly flawed, don’t even get me started. I’ve lost faith that I’ll ever get help, especially out here, and I’m worried about what that could mean. Suffering for at least the next couple of years. Worsening symptoms to the point of permanent damage. Or worse. I really just don’t know what to do, and it feels like there is absolutely nothing I can do. That’s where the anxiety is coming from; that’s why I’m getting depressed. Because they won’t actually help me. They can’t be bothered.