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Archive for the category “life”

Day 73 of Isolation: Happy Memorial Day

It’s the unofficial start of summer and we’re still in lockdown. I actually pretty much forgot it was Memorial Day after I reminded my 9yo that he didn’t have school this morning. With everything going on, it’s hard to tell which day is which, let alone if one is a holiday. Plus, I’m depressed enough without thinking about soldiers that didn’t make it home from war.

I miss the days we lived in Coraopolis, PA. They had a huge Memorial Day parade that was the highlight of the summer really. We lived there for two years on the street the parade went down so we got a bird’s eye view without leaving our living room. Of course, we did go down to the street because what’s the point of a parade if you aren’t sitting on the curb.

Here’s some pictures from 2007.

They were so little and cute. I miss being able to get them dressed up and take pictures. I used put them in red, white and blue for Memorial Day and 4th of July; green for St. Patrick’s Day; orange and black for Halloween and red/pink for Valentine’s. They looked forward to their new shirts each year, but money dwindled and the shirts were less frequent. They outgrew the old ones and then just got too old to dress up if I was lucky enough to even have them around for a holiday. Sigh.

It’s hard to believe they’re all grown up now and one has a child of her own. This was just thirteen years ago. Seems like yesterday. Things were simpler back then.

I think the lockdown is finally getting to me.

Day 70 of Isolation: Family Dinner

My oldest daughter decided to cook dinner for the family. She can’t really cook, but at least she wanted to try, I guess. I was not home when said cooking was being done.

When we got back from grocery shopping, I was worn out and looking forward to sitting down in my quiet room with a bowl of leftover chicken and rice, but my daughter wanted us all to sit at the table.

We never eat that the table except for holidays because it always ends in arguments (with or without yelling). It’s emotionally and mentally exhausting for me, and I almost never enjoy the meal because I’m stressed out. But after her blow-up yesterday, I felt obligated to join.

Despite my already bad mood because of depression and the fight yesterday, I tried to participate in a family thing. I even ate her food. It’s not that I didn’t trust it or anything, I just really had a taste for my rice. She made chicken wraps with some kind of cilantro-lime sauce and my black bean & corn salsa.

It turned out surprisingly well. I probably would have added rice to the chicken to make it go farther. She ended up cooking three of my six chicken breasts I had left. Those had to last us until… who knows when. Now we’re almost out of meat. I wanted to cry when I found that out, but held it together.

The best part was Jack actually ate two of the wraps, and he normally hates flour tortillas (says he doesn’t like the texture) and liked the sauce and even the avocados. The baby did not like the avocados but enjoyed mixing the sauce in with some of my leftover rice and the chicken from the wraps.

I think it was a little easier to enjoy the meal when I didn’t have to spend two hours cooking first. I even helped clean up when normally, I retreat to my room as soon as we’re done eating because I’m barely awake at that point. My daughter, on the other hand, was super tired and stressed and finally understood why I don’t eat with the family. Usually, I’m not even hungry by the time I finish cooking (especially on holidays).

Anyway, I’ll have to get her to write down her sauce recipe to add to the tin.

I’m also guessing we’re going to be having more family meals because she thinks that’s what’s wrong with the family (they just don’t really work for us, but I guess we can try once a week or something).

Day 69 of Isolation: Family is Unraveling

Apparently I’m a shitty mother and a worse grandmother and we all suck.

That is all.

Day 67 of Isolation: A Visit

My oldest son is eighteen and has severe asthma thanks to our cats. Since this makes him high risk with regards to COVID-19, he decided to go stay with catless friend once school closed in March. He’s been there ever since and hasn’t had to use his inhaler or meds at all the entire time (which is amazing because he used his inhaler once or twice a day at home).

Anyway, I’ve seen him once for like two minutes in the last two months until today.

He stopped by on his way back from the high school to show me his cap and gown he picked up. I made him put it all on because I don’t know if we’ll actually get a graduation or not.

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He’s the first of my kids to graduate high school. My oldest dropped out her junior year at 16 (even though that’s illegal in our state). I’m not sure what the medal is for, but the ropes are for his ASL class.

Apparently, they’re going to have an online ceremony on the official graduation day of June 6, but he doesn’t want to do it. They’re also prepping for a live event in August if we’re allowed to gather in groups by then. I’m thinking it might just be the graduates and not family because I don’t see us being in that phase of opening by then.

It was nice seeing him after all these months. The girls think he’s gotten taller (he’s 6’3″) and commented on his hair which desperately needs to be cut. I thought it looked nice. We chatted for a few minutes and then he had to go.

He did leave this in the yard, though, as a reminder that he exists (one of his sisters said she forgot about him, lol).

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It’s really weird to think about because he was planning on moving in with this friend after graduation, preferably after finding a job so he could pay them rent (they’re letting him stay free since he’s high risk and can’t work right now). He was saving up for a program to work on ships at sea. Now he says he might do that to start but then go to some maritime college later to become an engineer. At least he has goals which is more than my other kids have (except maybe the 14yo who wants to be an interior decorator).

Pretty soon, he’ll be living on the other side of the country or out at sea for months at a time (a friend of his is doing the program he wants to do and was gone for most of the last year). Not seeing him is going to be the norm now. He’s all grown up. Okay, I’m gonna cry now.

I’m so proud of him and hope things work out with his schooling if this apocalypse doesn’t take us all first.

Day 66 of Isolation: Health Check

I didn’t do one last week because Mother’s Day sucked and didn’t do one yesterday because I was so worried about my grandson, so I guess today is the day.

Update on the baby: so far he seems fine today. He’s eating and playing as long as the Tylenol/Ibuprofen is working. Once it wears off, though, his fever spikes and he gets lethargic and cranky. Looks like it’s just one of those random viruses kids pick up from somewhere. My daughter’s friend said her daughter had the same exact symptoms last week. They lasted a couple days and then she was fine. Hopefully that’s all it is.

As for me…

My weight is up another pound. Official weigh in was 264.6. I was down to 262 a couple weeks ago. But my husband went and picked up ice cream and a Dutch apple pie the other day. It’s just so damn tempting. But the pie is officially gone so hopefully I can control myself from now on.

My blood pressure has been crap. It was 143/97 when I got up yesterday and then 168/96 after I took my meds. But that could possibly be because my 17yo came home with a friend and was making sandwiches in the kitchen. I was beyond pissed and took my blood pressure after storming up the stairs. She left again after that.

Today, it was 149/85 a little while ago (after my meds). The first week I took the meds, my pressure was around 128/82 in the morning and then in the upper 130s/80s during the day which is high but compared to what it was before the meds seemed reasonable. Now it’s even higher. It’s been in the upper 140s to low 150s/90s during the day after taking my meds which is stage 2 hypertension.

I need to find a doctor. My chest has been hurting a lot. Well, not really hurting, just feels hard to get a full breath. It’s like a pressure on it. I’m afraid to do anything that will raise my blood pressure further like go for walks or housework so I’m stuck just sitting around again which isn’t helping the weight issue.

I’m stuck again. And without a doctor at all. I’ll run out of pills in about two weeks. The stress and anxiety are not helping for sure. I think I need some different meds or a stronger dose of this stuff.

My goal for this week is to watch my portions and stay away from the junk food. Since the pie is gone and I don’t normally eat a lot of ice cream (lactose intolerant) and we’re out of popcorn, that should be a little easier. Back to drinking water whenever I think about food. And then peeing every ten minutes, lol.

Day 65 of Isolation: Poor Baby

arroweaster_041220My grandson is sick. He’s just 11 months old. I guess he was up all night with a sudden, high fever that just would not go away even with Ibuprofen so my daughter called her ex’s mom to take them to urgent care (my husband was already at work with our only car so I couldn’t help even if I was awake).

His symptoms were sudden, high fever, rash, and peeling palms. Very bad signs. But my daughter refused the COVID test for some reason.

Now it’s a waiting game to see if he develops any new symptoms of those get worse. He’s currently staying with his other gramma while my daughter at work because she’s better equipped to deal with a sick baby. I don’t have the energy and my husband is still at work.

She said he seems to be feeling better already now that the Tylenol they gave him has finally kicked in. Hopefully, it’s nothing serious and just one of those things kids pick up randomly. It’s concerning that those symptoms happen to be the main ones for this Kawasaki disease kids are getting related to COVID-19.

My heart does not need this extra anxiety.

Day 63 of Isolation: Unisolated

I left the house and went somewhere for the first time during lockdown, not including my trip to the ER which was unavoidable. Other than that, I’ve driven my daughter to the store twice and rode along with my husband when he got gas the other day just to get out, but I’ve never actually gone anywhere myself.

But the women of the house needed certain supplies my husband refuses to buy so out I went. Originally, I was just going to run to the Safeway in town to pick up a few things, but instead, my husband drove me to Walmart.

It was a weird experience starting with the fact the Walmart parking lot was practically empty on a Friday afternoon. My husband’s done all of the shopping the last two months. I haven’t been to a store since March 13. With my health issues (anemia and now severe hypertension), I’m considered high risk. It’s bad enough I have to worry about catching this virus from my husband and daughters who go out to work/babysit. We decided it would be better if I don’t put myself out there as well, upping my chances of infection.

This was just one of those essential trips that had to be done, though. I mean, my 19yo could have bought the stuff on one of her numerous snack runs or on her way home from work, but instead, she’s just been taking my personal supply. Then suddenly three of us had our cycles hit at the same time and we were nearly out. She still didn’t think to pick more up, leaving it to me. Figures.

So, yeah, I went out. And now I’m full of anxiety and guilt. Guilt because I’m still not completely sure I’m well and these symptoms are related to my hypertension. What if they’re not? What if I am sick and passing it to everyone? Nevermind my husband refuses to wear a mask (I was wearing mine).

I got us some groceries and other things we needed, and by the time we checked out, my chest was killing me. Coronavirus? Possible heart attack? Anxiety? Who knows. It hurt to breathe and having the mask on wasn’t helping. I was exhausted by the time we got home and then the anxiety kicked in. Every difficult breath, every slight cough, every scratch swallow makes me wonder if I caught something. Am I unintentionally passing it to my family? To my grandson?

The anxiety is making my blood pressure worse. It’s been way up the last few days to begin with, but I can feel my chest tightening the more I worry. I’m ready to dig out the leftover supply of anxiety meds I have except those are actually blood pressure medication that happens to help with anxiety. I no longer have a doctor so I have no idea if they would be safe to take with my actual blood pressure pills. This sucks.

I don’t ever want to leave my house again except to walk around my neighborhood. There’s just too much anxiety involved. Now I’ll be worried for weeks if I’m developing symptoms. I can’t deal with this right now.

If anything, mental health professionals are going to have a boon when this is all over and everyone needs to get their anxiety and depression treated. I’ll be in line for sure.

Day 61 of Isolation: Needing a Break From Reality

Reality sucks right now.

That’s an actual understatement if ever I’ve heard one. But it’s hard to escape reality at the best of times. With the upending of civilized society and pending economic doom on the horizon, it’s hard to even relax. Stress and anxiety follow you everywhere.

I need a break from it all. My constant state of anxiety is not helping my blood pressure and is only adding to my crippling depression. And the number one instigator is Facebook. The more I’m on the site, the more down and anxious I get.

But I can’t seem to step away like I have in the past. I pretty much stayed off of the site all of 2018 because it was making my depression worse. I would get on periodically to see if anything was going on with my family but then get right back off without posting anything. I only started posting again in 2019 as the measles outbreak happened and then to keep family updated on my daughter’s pregnancy.

Mostly now I just sit all day reading posts about the world falling apart and feeling worse and worse with each one. It’s become ritual with the pandemic to get on every morning to see if things have gotten worse than expected. It made sense in the early days to keep up-to-date on infection rates and closures, but now…

It’s the same thing every day. More infected, more death, more people being stupid. The worst part is seeing posts from my extended family that make me sick. Anti-vax, pro-gun, pro-Trump, pro-fuck-everyone-else-I-want-a-haircut. I’ve lost respect for all of them. Seeing their posts just… it makes the depression worse because I can’t go back to seeing them the same way now that I know they are so self-centered and uncaring about their fellow humans.

I need a break. I need to step away from Facebook at the least, but it’s hard when there’s also nothing else to do all day. I get bored easily and always go back. I have started to “unfollow” family members that are making things worse for me. They are still on my friend’s list and can still see stuff I post, but I don’t see their idiotic pro-Trump, god-bothering, gun-loving posts. I guess that’s a start.

I’m going to make an effort to stay off Facebook and find other things to do. I need to find a new reality.

Day 59 of Isolation: Mother’s Day Redux

I was in such a foul mood yesterday, but I did want to give thanks to my own mom who isn’t with me anymore. I miss her every single day. This is my 19th Mother’s Day and the 19th Mother’s Day without my mom. She died in August 2000, just a couple months after my first child was born. We never got to be moms together and she never got the chance to be a grandma which she was so looking forward to.

So to my mom, Glenna Jean… Happy Mother’s Day to the best mom out there. I wish I had been a better daughter and told you more often how much I love you. I miss our weekly Sunday chats (although I’m sure Dad doesn’t miss the long-distance bills, lol). I wish you could see your grandkids and great-grandson and be a part of their life, but it just wasn’t meant to be.

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Me and my mom in 1985. I was 8.

And here’s the last picture of her alive with her very best friend–her sister, Nora who I named my youngest daughter after (Nora Glenn after the both of them).

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And to the other moms in my life…

My mother-in-law, Kay, who is also no longer with us:

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Here she is with my youngest son, Jack, in 2010. The last time we saw her. She died in March 2017.

And to my daughter, Meagan, on her first Mother’s Day, who despite all of her issues, is a really good mom. I’m so proud of her.

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Day 58 of Isolation: I Hate Mother’s Day

I just hate it. It’s a yearly reminder that my mom is gone and my family really doesn’t care that much about me. Sure they say they do, but they don’t really show it.

I’m so depressed now because I stupidly hoped for something different this year–that the kids would do something for me or think of me in some way. But they didn’t and I don’t know why I expected anything else. You know that saying about definition of insanity. Mother’s Day is a perfect example of the premise for me.

I probably should have started by staying off of social media because seeing all of my family and friends posting tributes to their mothers or pictures of what their kids/grandkids got or did for them was just depressing.

I got… nothing. Well, I got a candy bar from my daughter’s friend. That’s the only gift.

Then one of my kids asked me what I’d like for breakfast, hypothetically speaking. Guess she really did mean hypothetically because she wasn’t even home on Mother’s Day.

When I went downstairs to get some coffee since I didn’t get the breakfast in bed I was hypothetically promised, the kitchen was a disaster of dishes piled everywhere and dirty counters. There was food all over the table, high chair and floor from when the baby last ate that my daughter never cleans up. I immediately went back upstairs without getting any food and only had microwaved coffee from yesterday.

Then later, I decided to try and do some yard work. I eventually asked my 9yo to help and all he did was whine about how hard everything was until I gave up even trying. He went right back to playing on the computer and I went back to my room alone.

My oldest daughter had to work (her first Mother’s Day) so my husband was busy with babysitting. My oldest son who doesn’t live with us at the moment texted me a Happy Mother’s Day. The 17yo (who said she would cook me breakfast) eventually texted me in the afternoon. My brother texted also. I didn’t even see my 14yo all day. And when I tried to cook dinner, it was such chaos in the kitchen, that I gave up. No one brought me any food or anything.

Eventually, I made myself a box of Kraft macaroni with some meatballs.

Happy Fucking Mother’s Day to me.

So, yeah, just another day.

I don’t know why I keep expecting anything else. After nineteen years of this, it should just be expected that I will be ignored. There’s a lot of lip-service about how I’m a great mom and they all love me so much but no follow-through. The only cards I get are usually from my dad and brother (sometimes my in-laws) or drawn on lined paper with five minutes of effort. Any gifts I’ve gotten were because the schools had the kids make something. My husband and kids would never put any effort into a day just for me if they weren’t forced apparently.

I just hate this day. I hate hate hate Mother’s Day.

Now, I’m so fucking depressed, I can’t stop crying because this is my life and I’ll never have those nice memories of my family just doing stuff for me because they love me.

That’s just not my life and never will be.

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