Tag Archive: help

Flying Out the Door

I’ve been posting some things for sale, found among what John N left me, on eBay, Craigslist, and a more-local app called LetGo. I apparently have been pricing things low, because they are being snapped up. I will likely be able to get through June nicely if this keeps up, and I haven’t yet posted that much of it. Of course I’ll want to keep some of it… but it is such a relief that I can clean up my place, which is pretty slammed with all this stuff, and manage to get some breathing room in the bank account besides.

Nothing new on a job, but I haven’t had a lot of time or a lot of jobs to apply for. I should probably go to the “local” (30 miles away) Job Service Center or whatever they call it here. Might do that after my trip to the Post Office tomorrow to mail off my goods.

My cats have really been loving this time together. Cecil has gotten into the habit of (now several times a day} climbing up on my shoulder and purring. Of course, he’s so large that only his head and front shoulders are on my shoulder; his rear legs are on my belly. But he purrs so well. He only stays there a couple of minutes and then runs off, but he also spends a lot of time in my lap or between my legs (I sit in a recliner most of the time and the footrest opens to a solid piece).

I really appreciate all the love, attention, concern, prayers, energy, candles, etc. that my friends are giving me. It’s still going to be rough for a while, but I thank you for all you do.

Hugs,
Me

New Plans

I find myself conflating several goals again. The goal of finding permanent housing has rung a bell with another activist advocate, who is also losing her housing. So we are discussing the likelihood of being long-term housemates. At this point the talks are going quite well. No, I’m not finding another girlfriend (some of you think that my entire life is predicated up on that; you haven’t been watching very well, have you?). I’m finding someone I can trust to keep up her end of a housing situation WHICH I COULD DO BY MYSELF, just because I like helping people.

The area I am looking to move to has a good homeless service organization, a good animal rescue organization, decent services and supports for my needs (and hers). Nothing’s perfect, but the biggest potential fly in the ointment is that somebody else could buy the house I want before I do… and there may be others in the area, although not with all the good stuff this house has.

Just putting it out there. The gods (Universe, etc.) know my heart and what I want to be doing. I hope those of you reading this will add your prayers or energy toward this end.

Hugs,
Me

New Year

Like many people, I have not been at my best for the past several weeks. The weather has been strange, with only one very light snowfall yet, and often reaches temperatures in the 70s. Either this is the Winter of Global Warming or we’re being set up.

This weekend, I will be celebrating with many friends at GAFilk. Lots of music, lots of love.

People wonder what this blog is about. I’m a psychiatric survivor, musician, direct support professional, disabled person, pagan priest, bard, friend, online groups manager, science fiction and fantasy fan, reader of much non-fiction, editor… and I love my two cats.

I get criticism that I don’t just pick one subject and blog on it, but that would mean I would need many blogs. This blog reflects my humanity, in all my failures and successes, joys and degradations. I have been trying to make myself the best person I can be, and have had a lot of success in doing so, but it is far from a finished product.

If you are someone I have helped, thank you for being there so that I could practice being the good person I intent to be. If you are someone I have refused to help, thank you for helping me set boundaries on what I can and cannot do.

Hugs,
Me

Labeling Issues

I have some dear friends who seem to believe that defining gender by multiple possibilities solves something. I don’t see it, but maybe that’s because I’m old. I’ve spent a fair part of my life battling gender-role stereotypes; I’m not in the least certain that defining more genders makes this any easier or better. I am who I am. While I am currently comfortable in my body, I’ve found that has varied widely over the years, and might have done a surgical procedure to reassign my gender at one time or another if it were (a) available and (b) affordable, but am currently happy I did not.

I completely support my GBLTQO friends in determining who and what they are. As I have never been entirely certain who or what I am, and as that uncertainty in my case has not been restricted to questions of gender identity, why would I not?

Am I cis? I think I’m too old for any such determination, and if the options discussed today were discussed when I was in my 20s I might have easily argued that I am not. However, I’ve been what I am for so long that I don’t think it matters how I am labeled. I do not, however, feel it is appropriate to lump me into a category which has not existed for at least 60 years of my life and would prefer for my friends to not do so.

Here’s the main point: In my life, labels have been the cause of issues, problems, and stigma, not the solution. Never the solution. But I support your right to stick whatever labels on yourself that you feel is right, and hope that it does more good than harm to you.

As for genderless pronouns, the same goes. I’ve used some early attempts at this myself. I do not know the source of the current set being used by young people, but nobody asked me about it and they should have asked people who cared and have fought the same fights (which includes me). Maybe I’m just jealous they didn’t ask, but I do not find the new terms usable. (You can go through my old writings and find “s/he” and “hir” used rather widely as far back as 1985, so I’m not making this up.)

Anyone care to discuss this? The floor is open. Best forum is my Facebook page; comments here are so much spam I may have effectively closed them.

Hugs,
Me

Catching Up Yet Again

I continue to work my new job. While I don’t particularly *like* the guy I’m working for, he needs the help, and so far he dislikes me considerably less than many of the other staff. It’s easier work than before, and as I’m only working 3 days per week (longer hours) it’s about the same amount of gas and I get really long weekends, so overall I’m happy with the new job. My co-workers are a good group of people, and I have options should I choose to no longer work at this house.

I’ll get back to work on fixing the car as the month comes to an end. Tires and injectors are first on the list, struts lower down. I’m really feeling good about how I handled the task and the debt.

Life is moving forward at a nice pace with good possibilities, for all of which I am thankful. If not everyone around me is thankful for their lot, I can offer help without taking responsibility, which is also a new thing for me.

The next steps are within sight. I will continue to take them.

Hugs,
Me

CompuToys

I ordered two old-but-running ASUS Eee PCs off eBay last week. the first one, a 900A, arrived today; the second, a 1001H, was shipped today. I’m cleaning them up, fixing them up, upgrading them as needed, and will keep one, selling or giving away the other. I could probably sell either one for what I paid for both… but I do have a soft spot, and there are people who could really use one of these that don’t have $50.

Grassroots for Peace

You want to see the way things ought to work in the world?

Several years ago, I donated $35 to a campaign called Project Asset. This project took the daughters of sex workers in India and taught them computer skills so they had an option that did not mean following their mothers’ line of work. While Project Asset is now a multi-million dollar effort, that is not the measure of its success. The measure of its success is the dozens of college graduates and hundreds of high school graduates who would not have had a chance if the program did not exist. It is even the cooperation of local criminal elements, who completely left undisturbed the training centers which were built in the middle of the worst parts of the worst towns despite containing thousands of dollars of computer equipment.

One of Project Asset’s partners, Kailash Satyarthi, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. This is the effect we are having.

Project Asset was started by a student at a major Arizona university (sorry, I don’t remember whether it was Arizona or Arizona State). Her father chipped in a little. I chipped in a little. Some of my friends chipped in a little. Eventually, they attracted larger donors, and in the past few years even started getting funds from nations and even the UN.

It doesn’t take much to fix the world. It starts with caring.

Not Doing So Well

I’ve been melting down, or nearly so, for the past couple weeks. Everything is going well, but it’s not. I’m not letting myself be affected by stress, but I am. Apparently I am doing a good job of isolating stress from what I’m doing, and a poor job of dumping the stress or destressing so it’s building up.

The past couple days at work I have been nearly useless. The guys have not been doing well at all. There is still a lot of turmoil, getting staff in to cover slots instead of getting back to some kind of normal, and that always distresses the guys. But it’s getting to me, instead of my usual way of letting it flow over me.

The stresses have been: Death of car, dealing with my mother to get me home and then replace car, performance itself (although mitigated by how well I did), all the stuff going on at work (manager’s death, loss of staff, reaction of guys), the extra hours I worked to make up my missed time, information on my disability (which might end in 2 years, the way I read the law — and they don’t say explicitly anywhere what happens at the end of what they are now calling the “3-year extended trial work period”). And then the death of Robin Williams. That especially hit me because of all the potential suicides I’ve stopped, and the knowledge that he had stopped a few himself.

So how do I destress? I have people I can tell the problems to, but it doesn’t go away. I have nobody I can hold. Meditation has never worked for me, although I give it another try every few weeks/months/years.

OK, there is your 5 minutes of angst. Nothing to see here. Move along.

Hugs,
Me

Recovery

With my mother’s help, I have a new vehicle. It’s a 2006 Chevy Cobalt with 88,500 miles on it. Paid $5990 plus tax and license. So I got back to work Thursday.

Then I worked day shift AND my regular shift Friday. Day shift Sunday. Extra hours Monday. And more hours Tuesday including working by myself all shift, which should not happen, with the promise of Wednesday off to rest. A lot of this is because my manager’s mother passed away, and he needed more time away to deal with it, as is fully understandable, so I pulled my weight as a member of the team. But I’ve worked at least 42 hours this past 7 days, maybe 45, and I have been feeling overworked at my normal 25.

So then my manager got back today, and asked me to work. I had to tell him no. Instead, I went to take a computer desk back to an ex (had to disassemble it, and reassemble it at her apartment), pick up my computer (which died last Wednesday night, seems to have been a memory chip going bad), and then spend a few hours getting my checkbook spreadsheet caught up. (I haven’t worked on it since I left for Confluence, when I found that their mobile app lets me view, but not edit, my spreadsheets.)

I think I’m caught up. I had some money left over and put it in savings just in case my paycheck is shorter than expected (this next paycheck includes 4 days off out of my usual 10, again for Confluence and the car trouble). I needed $50 of that savings to balance a payment due to be taken out tomorrow. But I think I’m on track again. And ZohoDocs tells me that they are working very hard on their mobile apps so that this does not happen again.

I have been very lucky. I have had things to do, friends to do them with, and the help I needed when things broke down. I now have to spend the next 18-24 months getting on top of things so that I won’t need to ask for help when the next crisis occurs.

Hugs,
Me

After Confluence

I barely made it to Confluence, and even more barely made it home. My car decided to dump its antifreeze in the middle of West Virginia, and, while I got some water in it almost in time, it was smoking like a fill-in-the-blank by the time I got to the first rest area in Pennsylvania. I called Sandy, and waited for her to get to me (coming in from Detroit, and she wasn’t nearly as close as she thought she was so I waited about 3 hours). I put 2 quarts of oil in Vanessa and refilled the water, and drove all the way to the hotel.

I did my best to ignore the problems, and performed my concert. I haven’t listened to the recording, but my gut feeling is that it was as good a show as I have done. There were about 30 people in the audience, and I sold 3 CDs afterwards — not bad, selling music to 10% of my audience.  I went to bed Friday night instead of going to the open filk, much as I wanted to. I had a great time for the rest of the weekend, and paid no attention to the crisis until it was time to act.

One friend at the after-party called her co-worker, whose husband works at Meineke about 2 miles from the convention hotel. I managed to drive the van there, where he confirmed that the head gasket was shot, and that it would be about 5 days and $1000 to fix. I had to get home, both to keep my job and to make sure my cats were all right, so I arranged for him to keep the van at Meineke and drive me to a car rental place. All this time I was on and off the phone with my mother, who did quite a bit to help me out. I had to walk to a second car rental place (I was dropped off, and the first place did not do out-of-town rentals), but it was arranged and I just barely had enough money to rent the car. I drove home in a new Ford Fiesta.

I had to take the Fiesta back to Enterprise by 9 this morning, and they gave me a ride home. I checked the local used car place, which was of no help whatever, and then my neighbor offered to drive me to Rutledge to look at used cars at the dealerships there. We found one that would do nicely, although it has rather high mileage for its age. He said he would drive me to a friend’s used car lot tomorrow, and if we found something better or significantly cheaper we would get that (Mom is on board with this).

I am extremely proud of myself. At no time did I melt down, start screaming at anybody, and I thoroughly enjoyed myself at the convention and made new friends (and strengthened older ones). I took the crisis one step at a time, and I lost no sleep. I could not have done this 15 years ago.

I have many friends to thank and have done so, privately and/or on Facebook. I believe I made a good impression on the concom and increased my stock as a convention guest.

I should be back to work tomorrow or Thursday. And they really need me.

Hugs,
Me