I Quit: Poem About Social Work

Today I quit my job
I’d had it up to here
I was tired of all the stress
The crying and the tears.

I went back the next day
Just as I knew I would
Because I know I’m needed
To bring some love and good

Tomorrow I’ll quit my job
Because of this or that
Paperwork piled high
But I always somehow come back

Why do I do this silly dance
Round and Round I go
Soaring with the few highs
Crashing often in the lows

Am I madwoman
Doing the same over and over again
Or do I just stay in this work
For the totally incredible friends

Some days I lose my ability
To love, to feel, to care
As the stress piles on and on
And becomes too much to bear

I eat chocolate to ease the pain
Color when I can
Get lost in good books
So I don’t have to think about it again

I show up early
Work late most days
I do it for the idea of hope
(Definitely not the pay)!

So if I can spread kindness
Give resources here and there
Show others it’s not hopeless
Then I guess I really do care

So here’s to a broken system
We do what we can do
I’ll show up early tomorrow
Bring hope, healing, and a little love for you

The Twists and Turns of the Past Month

Early October, my husband calls me at work saying he doesn’t feel well and is going to Urgent Care. The doctor there says he looks okay but wants him to go to the Emergency Room because he can’t get a full breath in. Turns out he had a massive blood clot in his lungs and another in his leg. One day later and I would have lost my love and best friend. He’s now on medication and doing fine but three days in the hospital were very scary for me. I got a taste of what it would be like to live alone, without my best friend, and I definitely did not like it. There was much sobbing and fear.

On the same day my husband went to Urgent Care, I was sent home from work early because I was totally and completely burnt out. I was snapping at my boss, crying, stomping around like a 2 year old, and engaging in much muttering under my breath. Thank God in the long run she sent me home because then I was able to deal with my husband. But at the time it made me angry because I had SO MUCH WORK TO DO!!

My boss has finally realized driving her team into the ground was not working so as a team we came up with expectations that seem more reasonable. This has lifted a load off my shoulders in the best possible way because I felt like I was drowning and would never recover from the stress of it all.

Last weekend I went to an Apple Festival with my mother in law and a bunch of people from her work. It was the most wonderful weekend I had in awhile. There was  crisp fall breeze, the scent of fresh apples in the air, beautiful leaves that were changing color, craft vendors, and of course fresh apple cider which is literally one of my most favorite drinks on the planet. The whole day was a big soul refresher and for the first time in months I fell asleep contented and did not wake up once.

Also in the past month I have joined two Bible studies. One is for people struggling with mental health issues called Hope and Grace. They meet every week and its a great group of people. I am making my husband go with me for support but it’s actually helpful to him so YAY! I also joined a Bible study about Romans which is very difficult because the book they are using is written like a college text book and is very hard to get through. But the people are nice so I’m going to keep trying.

My church has been doing a sermon series on the Beatitudes (Matthew Chapter 5 in the Bible). It has been very helpful in giving me insight into what God is looking for in a person. I also finished reading a book called Crazy Love by Francis Chan. That book blew me away! It really made me question how I am doing things when it comes to my relationship with God and also some strongholds I have in place that are getting in the way of my relationship with God which has been tough.

My fellow blogger, Jenny Lawson, also opened up her own book store which I was really excited to hear. You can find her blog here. She is one of the most hilarious writers I’ve ever read and you should definitely read her books. I would love to meet her in person one day.

Well that’s it folks. My mental health is back on track, I am no longer wallowing in despair and I hope to be writing more often.

 

What Would You Say: A Poem

*WARNING* Some parts of my poem below are pretty graphic. I apologize to anyone who is offended ahead of time. This is how I get through my depression. *

What would you say
If I told you that every day I want to die
That every step, every breath, every daily requirement
Is total torture and requires the strength of Superman
Just to get though 24 hours in one piece

What would you say
If I told you that I cry but tears never dot my cheeks
It is an internal maelstrom of rage, and hatred
Frustration, fear, anxiety, and so much more
All directed at myself but silent
So no one is bothered

What would you say
If I told you that I hated my friends all pregnant and plump
Parading their bellies full of babies like some trophy
Some unattainable prize I will never win
And that some days I just want to rip my uterus out
Because it is defective and so am I

What would you say
If I told you that I fantasize about sending letters
Full of cruel words that are stuck in my head
To parents I try to help but who are never satisfied
A system that is broken
And politicians who only care about the bottom line

What would you say
If they found me at my desk bleeding and pale
Because the expectations were too high
The pay was too low
And the praise was never enough.

You will say nothing
Because I will never say anything
And we will all pretend it’s okay
Until one of us collapses underneath the weight
Of a world too heavy to bear

I Am Lost…Can You Find Me?

I am lost…..Completely…Totally….Lost.

I am 36 years old. It is almost Thanksgiving and if you believe all the radio stations and stores around here it’s also almost Christmas. My husband is working on Thanksgiving from 4:15pm to 1:15 am on Friday. So no Thanksgiving together for us. I now have to have Thanksgiving with my sister in law who I am convinced does not like me, along with her husband, my adorable and lovely niece and nephew (who make the whole ordeal worth it), and my in-laws who I adore but can sometimes be a bit much when everyone is together. Then I get to dash off to my aunt’s house with my brothers to have dessert before dashing out the door again to go shopping for everyone. I am tired just thinking about it and would like to spend the next 8 weeks hiding under a cover so I did not have to decorate, bake, wrap, shop, or even think about how the hell I’m getting through all this.

I work as a case manager for children with disabilities to find them and their families resources to help with their needs and authorizing therapy. Most of the kids are sick because it’s that time of the year. The parents are always upset, demanding, and sometimes downright cruel. I am slowly losing my love of the job and want to both cry and scream while simultaneously putting my head through a wall. My other option is to fake my death and run away forever.

I am Diabetic, have high blood pressure (100% from the job I do because when I’m off it’s totally normal), and recently have been told my cholesterol is high. Lately my heart has been hurting and so I have to find a cardiologist to go see. I want to be a mother but I don’t know if it will be physically safe enough for me to do so because I take way too many meds for my health and it may not be safe to be off them and also I have some womanly struggles that get in the way. So I will know more in January when I go back to the OB/GYN doc. I gave up school for this because I felt it was the more important goal at the moment. Now I’m doubting myself.

I have recently gone back to church and feel absolutely nothing when I am there. My pastor is awesome and a good friend of myself and my husband. The people at my church are warm and welcoming and lovely people. It really is a great place to be. But I come in, I listen, I leave and I feel nothing. No happy, no sad, no love, no hate. Just another freaking obligation. I’ve tried reading my Bible, praying, but nothing is working right now. But I’m going to keep trying because I really do love God even if I suck as a Christian most of the time.

I have completely failed at the fitness challenge I joined 8 weeks ago and am too embarrassed to go to the ending party on Wednesday because let’s face it I am the biggest loser ever and didn’t even lose like 2 pounds. So super failure right there. Total waste of time, money, and effort.

Nothing makes me happy right now. I feel like I’m just going through the motions of being alive on a daily basis. I feel empty, numb, tired all the time, constant slew of headaches, and just sick of life. I feel like I don’t even know who I am anymore. I even went back to therapy for a few sessions and it has not been helpful at all.

I really miss my family. As much as my mother wasn’t the greatest person in the world we always had good holidays together. We always had fun as a family. I miss Christmas mornings together with my brothers and my dad and having cookies for breakfast and reheated McDonald’s sandwiches we bought the day before. I miss decorating the tree with them. I miss board games Christmas night because we always got a few new ones every year. I miss Thanksgivings at my aunt’s house when I was a kid and all the cousins were over. Now everyone is too busy, too far away, has their own family, etc.

I feel like I don’t know who I am anymore. I feel adrift in a sea of feelings I can’t sort out and with work don’t have time to do so. I feel so alone even when I’m surrounded by good people. Hugs are physically painful because they make me feel like I’m going to shatter into a thousand pieces. I have been retreating from everyone who loves me because I can’t take it right now. Isn’t that awful? The one thing that could make me feel better is probably sitting down and talking to someone and yet I can’t seem to do so.

I’m sorry this is such a bummer of a post. I just needed to vent. Tomorrow is a new day and hopefully a better one.

 

depression

Falling Off The Face Of The Earth, And Climbing Back On

I know it has been roughly 2 weeks since I last wrote a blog. Things have been hectic around here at home and I have been so stressed that I could barely get myself through the door and onto the couch most nights. So here is a recap of what’s been going on.

I have all but quit the Edge Challenge. I was so excited. I thought this would finally make a difference for me. But sadly a few blows to my self-esteem occurred, along with a doubled workload at work (naturally without an increase in pay), and then I decided to take a group exercise class and hurt my back so I’ve been unable to workout since last Saturday. I also decided (stupidly) that I would go to the first weigh in for the challenge and found out I had only lost 0.6 pounds. After almost 2 weeks of busting my ass at the gym. Then yesterday the standings came out and a bunch of people have already lost 8% of their body weight so I feel like why should I bother trying? I’m going to wind up a loser just like I always am.

My trainer, Morgan, said we are going to have a chat tonight when I go to the gym (if I go to the gym). I know she’s going to be all peppy and tell me not to quit but I honestly feel like what’s the point anymore? This has been a battle I have been fighting with myself since I was six years old and discovered my love of all things chocolate. Why is this so freaking hard. The pounds pack on so easily, why is it so hard to get them off? Why is this such a freaking emotional battle?

Food is a friend who has turned into an enemy. Food is comforting, it takes away my pain, and it makes me feel better when I’m stressed out and just want to stop feeling my feelings for five minutes because they are so intense I can’t take it. But then after comes the shame and the guilt and the feelings of failure. So that brief reprieve is followed by hours of guilt and body shaming.

Is there an end to this? I don’t know. Tonight I went to Cold Stone Creamery, which is an ice cream place near me, to have ice cream tacos. This is why I am up at 4:30am instead of sleeping. I would like to just get outside my body for one day and be able to objectively look at myself and my life and figure out a way to help myself and stop beating the shit out myself. Can someone please invent a machine that does that?!

My doc increased my depression meds and gave me B-12 shots to take every 2 weeks to boost my energy levels. I’m hoping it helps. I just feel like I have no more hope at all. Life is going to be this endless cycle of feeling bad, working to get by, and never truly being happy at all. Mental illness is a bitch and I hate it with my whole being. But I will keep trying to fight the good fight.

Ta Ta For Now

 

Ch Ch Ch Changes

I have been quiet on WordPress for awhile and for those that actually read my blog I apologize. Life has been hectic and I am in the middle of some major changes.  I am afraid to blog about these changes because if I fail and tell no one then I fail alone. But if I share my goals and fail then it feels like seemingly EVERYONE in the whole world will know and that is terrifying.

I have started to try to pray again. It has not been consistent, or beautiful for that matter but it is real. I am working towards reading my Bible again which is also inconsistent at the moment but could get better as I put more effort into it. I remember when I first became a Christian I was so excited to read about Jesus and God and all the things he had done. It was truly like being in love and wanting to know every and anything. There was some major passion and excitement. Now it’s like “Ugh. I have to read THAT again?” I am starting to think maybe I should join a Bible study because I tend to learn better in a group then alone. I feel like a jerk for feeling so blase about wanting to know more about my faith but I’m in a place where I’m not sure what else there is for me to learn.

I have also joined a challenge at my gym which starts in September. Basically whoever loses the biggest percentage of weight in 8 weeks wins $500 and whoever loses the highest percentage from ALL the gyms wins $5,000. I signed up myself and my husband but I think I made a mistake now. I signed up right after my friend Royal passed away out of fear. He was only 38 and died from weight related health problems. That is only 2 years older then me and so I freaked out and signed us up.

The reason I think it is a mistake is I am extremely competitive and I do not like to lose and when I do lose it destroys me. My husband has a healthier approach of we’re going to lose weight (hopefully) and learn some new workout skills as part of the package is 3 personal training sessions. But the trainer I’ll be working with has given me some exercises to start with before the challenge and I have been in excruciating pain after some of them. I did a whole body workout 2 days ago and my knees and legs still do not want to cooperate with me.

On top of the exercise, I am having food difficulties again. I was following this ketogenic diet where I was eating a lot less carbs and was doing well. Unfortunately I fell off the wagon and have not been able to get back on. Chocolate is literally like heroin to my body. I can’t stop once I start and then the cravings hit every day around the same time of day. I know I should make something else but it’s so darn good. It’s delicious, it’s soothing, and most importantly, it’s quick.

I can do this. But it’s going to take time. So please be patient if I do not blog daily. I am trying to add a lot to my life but this is still important. Any advice on making changes would be appreciated!

Time-for-Change

 

 

Am I A Defective Product?

Today after work I was reading a magazine article in Marie Claire magazine. I don’t subscribe to it but my father in law always gets free offers for magazines for doing surveys so I wind up with a lot of them.

This article was one page, and talked about three different women who are already executives or higher-ups in their companies. But apparently this is only the tip of the iceberg of achievement. All three women have done something else on the side that has taken off exponentially. While I admire that drive and creativity, I had a few small problems with the story.

One woman described her schedule as working all day, leaving work to get in a workout, spending time with her husband and kids before working on what I’ll call her second job. She is quoted as saying that if a client needs her at 3am she gets up and answers the phone. Super Woman personified! We should all aspire to be her, right? Eh, maybe not.

My problem is that this is not realistic for your average woman. I don’t even have kids (well my husband acts like one from time to time, but that is a blog for another time!) and I am exhausted by the time I get done work, do a workout, clean around my house, and make dinner. I need some down time to recharge my batteries, reset my brain and just give the world a rest for a few hours.

My second problem with this article builds off of the first. These women are being held up as ideals for women to strive for. It’s as if the magazine/article is saying “Look ladies you CAN have it all. They did it! Why aren’t you? What’s wrong with your lazy butt?” Isn’t it enough of an achievement that these ladies broke through the glass ceiling and became tops in their respective fields on top of being wives and mothers? But apparently not. It’s like success is not enough anymore, you have to keep piling on….and on…and on.  When is enough, enough?

Tonight I just want to say to all the mamas, papas, sisters, brothers, friends, and families out there: YOU ARE ENOUGH!! Stop trying to kill yourself for an ideal that very few reach and even if they do, they are probably so exhausted that they can’t enjoy it. If you want to strive for more, do it, but do it because YOU want to.

Much love, hugs, and kitten kisses to all of you (or puppy kisses if you prefer)!

 

Josh Groban Made Me Cry Today

This whole week at work has been (excuse my language) a shit show. Crisis after crisis with a side of crisis and crisis for dessert. My patience is at its limit right now and I literally had to take an extended lunch today just so I did not tell a certain parent what I really thought of her. I talked to my supervisor who reassured me that I was fine and I would make it through, which was enormously helpful. She agreed to call psycho mom with me tomorrow so we can (hopefully) set her straight.

I was on my way home today and was listening to a random CD of music I had made several years ago. Some songs were fast and made me dance, others were just funny, and some I wondered what I was thinking when I downloaded the song to a CD.

Then Josh Groban happened.

Silent Night filled my car sung by the angel voice of Mr. Joshua Groban. The song is one of my favorites and always has been, but this version is probably my favorite of the song. The way it just builds and crescendos is glorious. I highly advise checking it out. But for some reason it struck a chord today. I don’t know why. Maybe it was the stress, the awful things said about me and to me this week. But all of it washed away as I drove home and let the true love of God seep into my soul and remind me of how loved I am in His sight. I remembered that I am a beloved daughter of the Creator of the Universe and that what everyone else thought, at least in that moment, did not matter. It was such a beautiful moment that I find it hard to describe in mere words.

I know this may sound corny to some but I really needed that and I feel like God knew it so he spoke to me through music (as is the case sometimes). I hope this is an encouragement to whoever reads this. No matter where you are, what you have done, how horrible the world around you gets, God is there for you and loves you so much. He knows you inside out and upside down and the number of hairs on your head. Your name is carved in the palm of His hand. So take heart and don’t give up.

Sorry if this came across as a little preachy. This was just too perfect not to share today.

Overcome