Quarantine and Writer’s Block

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I’m having one of those days where I just don’t know what to write. Nothing good comes to mind. I don’t really want to share art or poetry today, but I don’t feel like I have much else to share lol. I guess I could write about a few mundane things going on in my quarantined life right now…

  • One of my poor kitties has a huge hematoma (blood-filled cyst) on his ear. We already took him to the vet and they gave him a shot and some medicine, hoping it would shrink, but so far, nothing has effected it. If it doesn’t change by next week, they will have to do surgery to remove it and his ear will always be disfigured. I feel bad for him. His poor ear is flopped over from the weight of the hematoma and he looks like he is in discomfort from it 😦
  • My husband is a teacher and he is trying to figure out how to do the whole homeschooling online with his students thing. You wouldn’t believe how many problems he and the school district have run into trying to get Google classrooms up and running! My poor husband has been frustrated, irritable, and sometimes almost enraged by the technical issues he keeps facing. I feel bad for him and wish I could help, but I can’t. It kind of makes home a less fun place to be sometimes!
  • I really miss being able to decompress by going out shopping. Even if I didn’t buy anything, it was fun and got me out of the house. I miss it. I guess I could still go to Walmart or Meijer or whatever, but I feel that would be unwise unless I really need to go there for groceries or other essentials. I don’t want to contribute to the overloading of our healthcare system if I can avoid it.
  • Watching the news is so depressing, I’ve kind of been avoiding it more lately. I’m usually one of those people who is up to speed on all things happening in the news, but right now it just makes me feel helpless and sad, especially for the poor doctors, nurses, and other emergency and healthcare employees on the front lines of Covid 19.

Ohio Coronavirus Lockdown – How I’m Coping

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Here in Ohio we are now in an official lockdown, where only essential business is allowed to be out and about. I don’t have any official business, so I’m stuck at home lol. Being home all the time does start to get to you after a little bit. You don’t realize how much even small things, like being able to go to a restaurant, sit down, and eat affect your mood until you can no longer do them.

On the positive side, I am trying to stay busy. Today I did some cleaning and organizing around the house and it felt REALLY good. I would definitely recommend it to others stuck at home. Doing stuff like that makes you feel like you are accomplishing something, and it feels great to look around afterwards and see the change your cleaning up has made.

I’ve also been reading some, doing a lot of social media gazing, watching tik tok dances (a guilty pleasure of mine), doing puzzle books, and I took a few paid product review jobs through Upwork, just for something to do and to make a few extra dollars. So far I’ve signed on to review several supplements/vitamins (I loved the hemp gummies!), books, wrinkle reducing masks, a nail decorating kit, and a kebob maker. Hey, I get lots of free stuff that way too!

So how are you all doing? Are you under quarantine? If so, what are you doing to stay busy? Are you having any trouble with depression or anxiety? I know I have at times.

Wanting to Be Special

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Do you feel “special”? Do you long to feel special? It seems to me that people strive so hard to be special, to be exceptional. Ordinary is for losers…or at least that is the message we seem to get from society.

I’ll admit that I share this obsession. Maybe part of my problem started with being an overachiever in grade school. I always had to be the fastest, the best in my class. I went to all the gifted programs and was praised for exceptionally high standardized test scores. I was highly competitive and a horribly sore loser…something I still struggle with to some extent lol.

The problem is that when you are told all the time growing up how “exceptional” you are, it sets you up for unrealistic expectations in the real world. In the real world, it isn’t always the smartest, the most talented, or the hardest working that succeed, and that is a bitter pill to swallow.

From my experience, the ones most likely to succeed are the ones that have wealth and powerful families behind them. Yes, some people do manage to crack the glass ceiling alone by sheer luck or being at the right place at the right time, but the majority at the top of any enterprise are generally those with connections the rest of us could only dream of.

Of course, you can focus on the feel-good, conciliatory message that “everyone is special”, which is undoubtedly true in some ways, but when I hear that, I always think about Dash from the Incredibles asking, “If everyone is special, is that really just a way of saying that nobody is special?”

My Sister Would Have Been 43 Today

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Today my sister would have turned 43 if she hadn’t prematurely ended her life around 8 years ago. I still miss her deeply. Part of me is glad she is out of pain, as she struggled horribly with mental illness, physical pain, and serious addiction issues, but most of me just wishes things would have been different. I don’t hold any real anger towards her final action, but there is a lot of sorrow and wondering exactly what was the final straw.

Has suicide ever touched your life personally? Have you lost a friend, family member, or other important person that way? If so, how do you deal with painful occasions like their birthdays/anniversaries/etc.?

A Few Random Life Thoughts/Happenings

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  • The grief from losing my kitty is starting to ease a little bit. Still a big loss, but I’m trying to focus on the future and how to bring more good things into my life right now because it feels like I could really use some good things.
  • Tonight I’m attending a poetry class at the library. The idea of the class is to use everyday castoff materials (like old ads, receipts, junk mail, etc.) as inspiration to create poetry. Thought it sounded fun and I could use the social connections right now.
  • I’m seriously thinking about auditioning for a part in a local theatre production soon. It makes me nervous as I haven’t done anything like that since school, but I feel I need to grow and add a little excitement to my life. I don’t even want a big role or anything, I just want to be a part of something fun and creative.
  • Just a thought, but I noticed something recently I wanted to share. It seems to me that when people share their darker thoughts and feelings straight out in essay form, prose, or spoken word, they are often sort of subtly shamed and told to cheer up in one way or another, which I find interesting, because when those same dark thoughts/feelings are shared in artistic forms like poetry/art, I’ve never seen people react in the same way by telling them to simply focus on the positive or cheer up. It makes me think that our darker thoughts and feelings are only really acceptable to many when slightly masked in some sort of art form. Why is that?

Reasons I’m Depressed Right Now

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  • My cat will die tomorrow. After 14+ years together.
  • A meetup group that I was truly enjoying and was beginning to feel part of disbanded for the foreseeable future.
  • I feel artistically lonely. I wish I had others in my “real” life who had the passion for art and literature (especially poetry) that I have.
  • There is a good chance I am going through early menopause and that is triggering my major increase in migraines and making my hormone levels go crazy, affecting my mood as well. The doctor says this could go on for years 😦
  • I have been fighting off migraines the last few days.
  • I wish I had someone to watch movies and tv shows with that really got into them like I do. My husband is just not a movie/tv guy.
  • There will always be a huge hole in my life where my family should be, as all of my immediate family members are dead other than my mother, who I have a shaky relationship with.
  • Climate change catastrophe and human ignorance. The realization that if scientists are right about climate change, we are likely causing our own extinction, as well as the extinction of much of life on earth. It is pretty much too late now and we humans are not willing to make the changes needed to save ourselves and the world even if there was time. In the end, industrialization may have been the absolute worst thing that could have happened to the world. I guess we can hope the scientists are wrong, but it isn’t looking good from what I see.

Holidays, Routine Changes, and Anxiety

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Been feeling stressed. I don’t know if it is because I am autistic or just part of my personality, but even the smallest changes to my routine tend to throw me off and cause a lot of anxiety…and the holidays seem to be filled with those kinds of routine manglers.

For instance, tonight I have a friend’s Yule party to go to and tomorrow I am supposed to meet my mom for an early Christmas dinner/present exchange. Part of me is looking forward to these events and even wants to go, but part of me is stressed out and just wants to go back to bed and hide under the covers until the weekend is over.

All the anxiety takes a physical toll too. It turns my tummy into a wreck and brings on headaches that can easily slip into migraines if I’m not careful. The anxiety last night about the events this weekend was so bad that it did give me a migraine, so I had to take my migraine prescription. Hoping that won’t happen again.

I often tend to think depression is worse than anxiety because its symptoms are more obvious and immediate, but I think I underestimate the compounding ability of high anxiety.