tHe haPPy grOUch

tHe haPPy grOUch

Friday, December 29, 2017

Have I really not written in over three weeks? I must be ill. There's always fodder, so it's not like I don't have anything to write about...

I still miss the lake, I still miss my son, and I still miss the Brookside. There, that's all out of the way...

Seriously, though...

I miss my boy. I see him when I drive him back and forth to/from school. And once in a great while when he pops in. I wish I could turn back time to when he lived with me. To when we spent our time together. My life is so empty without him.

And not having the Brook anymore has been terrible. I have no purpose now, really. I miss the Brook. I miss my customers, bosses, and coworkers. But it's more than that, those people became my friends and family. And not having them and the Brook in my life on a daily basis anymore is just awful.

Even when I do find a job, it will never compare to what I had at the Brook, the worth I felt, the connections I made.

Speaking of finding a job...

I counted the other day, and now I'm up to 36. 36 resumes/applications out since the first of December. This is crazy. How many interviews have I had now? Just a handful, I think. Counting the one I am going to today, I think five. Six if you count the phone interview with Olive Garden. Seven if you count the one that's scheduled next week with Dysarts. 7 interviews out of 36 applications. Geez! But the ball does seem to have begun rolling just this week. Maybe the calls will start coming in now. We shall see.

Now I find myself facing a new set of questions... What if I get offered a job that I don't really want? Should I decline the job and hold out for one of these other jobs I've applied for that I do want? What if the job pays really well, but I know that I won't like it? Or, what if I get offered a job that I might like, that pays considerably less? What do I do? Because I do think I might be faced with that decision. I think I may get a job offer for a job that I think (am fairly certain) I will not enjoy. But the pay is very good, and so are the benefits. And the employees there love the company. But I know that I will not like the job itself. So, what do I do?

I'm sitting here writing, looking online for jobs, while listening to the sounds of running water from all over the house.
Yesterday, my pipes froze. I wasn't smart enough to remember to leave my faucets dripping during this cold snap. What and adventure that was. Thankfully, Phil was here to help. We had to borrow a salamander (a large, tube shaped kerosene heater), dig out the snow and ice so we could get to the skirting and open it up, and get the heater under the trailer. Frozen plastic doesn't like to be moved, so my skirting/border took a bit of a beating. Oh well, we'll repair that in the spring. The pipes had also frozen in my water heater closet (which is on the outside of my house), so part of our time was also spent out there with a hair dryer. The salamander finally thawed the main line and the water returned to most of the house, but the end bathroom was still frozen, So, back out and reposition the salamander and wait. Finally the bathroom thawed as well, sink first, then finally the tub. Phew.
So now I have every faucet in the house dribbling. Kitchen sink, both bathroom sinks, and both tubs. Cold and hot water alike, because the hot water pipe was frozen as well. Geez. Friggin Maine winters. I'll be glad when this arctic weather passes. Wind chills of 30 below is just not right.

Christmas was, well, it was Christmas.
No, really, it was actually pretty nice. Christmas eve Phil and I made dinner and wrapped gifts, and Mom and Nana came over. We ate and visited and played a dominos game that Nana brought. Dawson actually called and wanted to come over, so I picked him up and he visited with us for a while too. After everyone left, Phil and I exchanged our gifts. Christmas morning, Phil left to be with his kiddos, and I immediately started getting ready for my family to come over. I made cookies and got the ham dinner ready. Logan and her boyfriend, Dawson, Mom and Nana all came over, even my niece and nephew came over too. We all opened presents and ate lunch. Everyone left around the same time, around mid-afternoon.
All in all, this Christmas was really quite nice.

But the after effects are always so hard. The Christmas crash, I call it. It happens every year. As soon as everyone left on Christmas day, I was immediately sad. I spent the rest of the day crying off and on, watching tv, scrolling facebook, and playing mahjong on my laptop. The next day was more of the same. The day after that I happened to have an appointment with my shrink. We decided to up my antidepressant. Maybe for now, maybe for good. We'll see. I'm on the maximum dose now, so there's nowhere else to go with this one. Speaking of which...

While filling out all of these online job applications, there is always the part where you're asked if you have a disability. The application goes on to list examples of disabling conditions. In every instance, major depression and bipolar disorder are cited in the list of examples. Now, I don't consider myself to have a disability because I have those things. Yes, they may have affected my work this year. My bosses noticed, my customers noticed. It was difficult to work, to socialize, to exist. But they didn't keep me from going to work, or performing my job. Ok, I wasn't very good at it for a while there... But I went to work. Anyway...
My drug regimen has been therapeutic, though. I have noticed a difference over the last several months. I have been taking the antidepressant, the Latuda for bipolar, and Topomax for mood stabilizer/anxiety. I'm not one of those people who believes meds are always the answer, but in some people, it truly is organic, biological, chemical. And meds are the answer for that. Some say medicinal marijuana is the answer. And maybe there is some truth to that, I'm not sure. I've not tried it. And I prefer not to. Even if it relieves the symptoms, I have a hard time believing that it treats the chemical imbalance, which is the underlying cause. What I'm doing is working for me, and I'm suffering no side effects, so I'll stick with that.

I have another interview this morning. A friend of mine messaged me yesterday and said her (insurance) office was hiring a receptionist, and told me who to email my resume to. I emailed my resume, and within the hour, I got a call asking me for an interview that same day or the next (of course, yesterday afternoon I was busy thawing pipes, so I couldn't interview same day). I think I may enjoy a job like that, a receptionist position. My concern is, I think the pay will be nominal compared to the job I wouldn't like, that pays more. Sigh. What to do, what to do.
Wait and see. Figure it out.

Well, I guess that's enough rambling for one day. Hope everyone had a lovely Christmas, and didn't suffer the Christmas crash too badly.
Be well.

Monday, December 4, 2017

I miss the lake, I miss my son, I miss the Brookside. But you all knew that already.
And, forgive me for a moment, but I might just spend some time feeling a bit sorry for myself.

This year has been pretty shitty.
Life, seems pretty shitty.

I spent over half of this year trying to come to terms with my decision to leave the lake. I still haven't come to terms with it. I don't know if I ever will. I'd probably still go back, given the chance. I know that I would. In fact, I spend a lot of time daydreaming about the current tenants leaving the place so that I can go back. I miss it so much. It's funny how a place can become such a part of you. And that spot on the water was more a part of me than I realized. And leaving it was a mistake that I have to live with. And it fucking sucks.

Sure, I've seen a little more of the boy since I've moved here, but not a lot. These last couple months it's mostly just when I drive him to and from school. A brief car ride a few times a week, that's the quality time I get with my boy now. I ask him to come over, but he just doesn't. Always has a reason or excuse not to. I look at pictures from when he used to live with me, when we would hang out and do things together, when he wanted to be with me, not that long ago... And I wonder where that went, what happened... I miss him so fucking much. It breaks my heart every single day.

And then of course, the Brookside.
That's a story you're all familiar with, too. The little bar on the corner. The place we all called home. The second family we all had. And now it's gone.
It was more like my first family... My father is gone, I don't often see my mother, I have been estranged from my sister for four years and I have no other siblings, I hardly ever see my one living grandparent, I don't see my cousins or aunts and uncles. And so, The Brookside truly was my family.
It was the one constant in my life, through four moves, a divorce, break ups, tragedies, my son leaving me, living alone, battling major depression...
The Brook kept me going through all of it. The last four years have not been easy, and it was the one constant bright spot in my life, the one thing that brought me happiness, comfort, solace, and gave me purpose. Most times, I felt like the Brook was all I had. Almost all the time, actually. I lived for it. And that was ok with me.
And I don't know what to do with myself now without it. I don't know what my purpose is anymore.

Not to mention, it was my only source of income. And a decent one, at that. I don't know how I'll make enough to cover everything.... The house payment, the car payment, the cable, internet, cell phone, electricity, car insurance, homeowners insurance, and anything extra...
I do have the opportunity for a few hours at Ramona's, but not many, and it's a huge pay cut compared to the Brook. And unfortunately, it's only temporary. Only until just before Christmas. And so, I'm on the desperate hunt for a job.
I'll have to get a very good paying full time job, or two ok paying jobs and work myself to death. That second choice doesn't sound very fun, but it may be my only choice. It's not like I have a ton of recent work experience in any field other than bartending. I've applied for a few office jobs (I do have some office experience, but it's been YEARS, and I studied secretarial science at Beal). But then again, I've bartended for the last 15 years, so... not sure I'll see many interviews from those.
It's all so frustrating.

And Christmas won't be bleak this year, as I feared. Because I went and spent about half my savings, as I knew I would. I should have held onto it, and not bought presents. It would have been the practical thing to do. It would have been the wise thing to do. But I've never been wise or practical at Christmas time. I guess I'd rather worry about how to pay a few bills than letting my kids go without a Christmas. Not very practical, I know.
We'll see how I feel about that later when the car payment is due, or the house payment.

I've worried and worried and worried, and stressed and stressed and stressed.
So much that I almost can't even do it anymore. Like I've run out of the strength to worry and stress anymore. I never thought that possible. I just can't anymore.
I don't know what's going to happen to me. I may lose my cable, or my cell phone, or worse, my car, or my house. Who knows.
Or I may get a good job and not lose those things.
I just don't know.
And I haven't the strength to stress about it anymore.
I haven't the strength for much of anything.

Life seems pretty shitty.