The Serendipitous Epiphany

I ran across this graphic on Facebook today and tears came to my eyes. These past few weeks have been a shitstorm of enormous proportion, and when I am alone, it’s all I can think of, especially when I close my eyes.13000182_10206852332807372_4728237984918275749_n I have medication that helps me to sleep soundly, but one of them gives me extremely vivid dreams, and the other makes it where I don’t dream at all, but the hangover is extreme. And the thing is, the one that’s got the worst hangover is not the one that helps me stay asleep, but the one that is supposed to help me fall asleep and then wear off. With either one, I keep a bottle of caffeine pills (200mg) on the other side of the bed and take it when my alarm goes off at 0600. I then hit the snooze button once or twice, and by then, I am ready to jump out of bed and get shit handled. For instance, this morning I got in the bathtub and shaved my legs, got dressed, and then went to CVS for an eyeglass repair kit and fixed my own glasses. I shaved my legs because Scales and I are getting together tonight, which may or may not include a pedicure. I’m not sure I can get to a nail place before it closes, but if I can, I am definitely interested. I am wearing my black Airwalk flip-flops today, which I love because they are so warm. I could practically wear them in any weather because the pads soak up my body heat so easily. I used to have a brown pair as well, but I lost them in the move…. somewhere. Trying to decide what color polish I want, because I will probably be wearing the same flip-flops to the DC United game. Maybe one set in black and the other in red. If they can airbrush, I want black with soccer balls. Meag would be so proud. I also want a DC United jersey, but that will have to wait, because I don’t want a fake one from Target. It’s something I’ve wanted to buy for myself since I was in high school, because at that time, the Houston Dynamo didn’t exist, and DC was the closest team to me. I am dyed in black, white, and red…. and have been since 1995. I also want a National Team jersey, but yet another thing that will have to wait. I have to get glasses, first, or else I won’t be able to see the game properly. 😛

Fixing my glasses was a new thing for me. I’ve never had to before, but I can’t get an eye appointment until Saturday morning. I would just order glasses from Warby Parker or Zenni, but my prescription is one month out of date, and doesn’t have my PD on it.The measurements have to be exact, because otherwise, the prisms won’t work. I also have to have small glasses, because again, the prisms can’t be too far down. I used to have two pairs of glasses, but the other pair was plastic and they didn’t last long. I also need prescription sunglasses, because I don’t want to drive without my glasses on…. it at least gives me a fighting chance. I did get a pair of regular sunglasses because they generally dilate your pupils for an eye appointment, and it was recommended that I bring some. I asked Scales if she could drive me, and if she can’t, then I’ll ask Sam. I’d just rather spend time with Scales. I am not underestimating the gift of her friendship, which came along at the perfect time. We’re very much alike and very different at the same time, which makes for great and long conversations about everything from relationships to what’s going on in the world. We’ve decided on taking turns hanging out in each others respective areas, and it’s my turn to go to her. Excited to see where she lives, because setting means a lot to me. Remember, Virgo. Earth sign, tied to the land & all the settings that come alive in front of me. It’s one of the reasons I was excited to see Dana’s apartment before I left, because then even if I was sitting in my room in DC, I could still picture where she was.

We only talked a few times after I moved… too painful for both of us.

And in terms of setting, it was a large part of the reason I moved to DC. I didn’t want to go anywhere I didn’t know. It’s taken me some time to figure out Maryland and DC, because I am literally ON the line between them. But if I had moved to NoVA, I wouldn’t have gotten nearly as much help as I needed, because Montgomery County has a fabulous mental health safety net, and Medicaid made everything free, except for my medications, which were a dollar a bottle. Getting private insurance made my health care more expensive, which I am not happy about, but I don’t qualify for Medicaid anymore, anyway. I make way too much, and I am passionate about reserving Medicaid for people who really don’t have the means to pay. Although if we go the single-payer route and Medicaid is opened up to everyone, it would make me extraordinarily happy. I am quite content at my job, but for those who aren’t, it releases you from the “golden handcuffs” that keep you in a job you hate because you’ll lose your insurance if you quit… and COBRA is just prohibitively expensive.

I just found out that my PCP doesn’t take my insurance anymore, and it makes me so sad, because I didn’t have to make an appointment to see him. I could just walk in and wait if I got there before 3:00. I hope that I can find something like it that does take my insurance, because it made getting medication refills so much easier, especially since they have Saturday morning hours.

I also need to make the time to see a massage therapist, because as a computer geek, it’s one of the few things that really makes me feel better after a long week of sitting in a chair that’s almost comfortable. I am also getting to the point where I need carpal tunnel surgery on both wrists, but that will have to wait until I can accrue enough vacation to be able to do it. Realistically, I need a week for each wrist, because I remember when Dana went through it, and though she was better in a few days, she couldn’t get back to the repetitive nature of her job right away.

Which reminds me of another funny story. They only do one wrist at a time so that you can still do things like wipe your ass. As the surgeon said, “I’m not doing both wrists at the same time for Dana. I’m not doing both wrists at the same time for you.” Additionally, he used a blue marker to indicate which wrist he was doing that day, and I can’t remember who said it, but one of us said, “he should have used a black marker. Black is slimming.” When we repeated it to the surgeon, he laughed… and as I remember, I think it was one of the few things he laughed at during the ordeal. Some surgeons are just not built for humor.

Scales just got back to me and she’s on for Saturday. W00t!

This whole having a friend thing is working out. It’s really allowing me to focus on my future and stop beating the crap out of myself. Especially for single people, friendships are life-sustaining, and Tinder has been excellent for that. I met Auna that way, too, and we are still friends to this day. I miss her all the time, but she is just a phone call away, one of the few people I will talk to on the phone because her personality is just too big for text. She reminds me of a t-shirt that my friend Jala used to wear all the time……. DANGER: EDUCATED BLACK WOMAN AHEAD.

I really like that Tinder allows me to meet people. Not chat with them over the Internet, but actually have a cup of coffee and see if it’s a friendship I want to continue. I think that my relationship with Dana really made the impression on me that skipping the friendship part and dating right away is taking away an essential piece of a relationship.

Thank you for that, Triple D (Darling Dangerous Dana). It’s just one of the things I learned from you that really stuck, along with a thousand other things, but this one is at the top of the list.

But right now, I am not charting the path toward dating with anyone. I can’t. It’s just too much. I feel that I am still too broken, that I am still one of “those girls” who can’t stop talking about their ex, but not in a bad way, ever. Just that the funny stories I’ve had over the years mostly include her.

And although I put my feelings for Argo away long ago, there is a part of me that needs to process that friendship all the way through, as well. Every lesbian on earth has that story of falling for their straight friend, and having to get over it by themselves, because it’s not the straight person’s fault they’re just not wired that way. I don’t have to deal with those “in love” feelings, but I do have to dig deep and figure out how it happened and why in order to move on completely…. why our relationship became so bipolar at my own hand, and how to avoid something like that ever happening again.

I decided long ago that Argo was the last one. The last friendship in which I would ever deal with Eros, because it wasn’t real. It was a byproduct of “the way I was raised.” As real as it felt at the time, it was an illusion of enormous proportions.

But God’s honest truth is that I do love her. Not in any kind of shady way, but the kind that is ever-present Philia and Agape rolled into one. I may never get the chance to express it, because I have done enough to kill hers for me. And that’s part of processing all this loss, as well. For a long time, she was my person in the Grey’s Anatomy sense of the phrase… and I would like to think that in that place and time, I was hers.

But that was then, and this is now. Regret has no place in the present, because all it does is drag me down deep into the recesses of myself, hiding from the rest of the world in grief and shame. I don’t have time for it anymore, because there are too many things I miss when I am that blue.

I am looking for things that help me to feel happy despite my grief. But that grief is my journey to take now, without either Dana or Argo looking over my shoulder, judging the process. It’s just going to take time not to feel so empty, and things like getting together with friends are the best medicine, because it’s the thing that really allows me to laugh. I should also start exercising to get my endorphins up, but one thing at a time. The first step is to feel good enough about myself to realize I deserve it. I don’t need to lose weight, but since I’ve been in the morass of grief, my muscle mass is dwindling to nothing and I can’t run up a small flight of stairs without getting winded. It’s probably from not eating, but I’m not there yet, either. I eat when I feel good, and when I don’t, food is the last thing on my mind. You’d think I’d have enough energy with all the caffeine to multi-task… you know, eating and thinking at the same time.

Well, not so much. I drink everything in sight (non-alcoholic, right now a Coke Zero and a cup of tea), but that’s really all I can manage. I need some Carnation Instant Breakfast or something. I’ll buy a case tomorrow. That should help. Much better than walking around the grocery store close to tears because I can’t find anything that looks good.

Again, I just need time. How much, I don’t know. But I do know that as long as I keep putting in the work toward wholeness, I will reap the rewards. Surely it can’t get any worse (famous last words).

Paraphrasing Dorothy Parker, this hasn’t just been terrible. This has been fancy terrible, with raisins in it.

I just have to have faith that things will continue to get better as I branch out into the world instead of hiding from it.

Amen.

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