Monthly Archives: January 2014

Blog for Mental Health Project

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“I pledge my commitment to the Blog for Mental Health 2014 Project. I will blog about mental health topics not only for myself, but for others. By displaying this badge, I show my pride, dedication, and acceptance for mental health. I use this to promote mental health education in the struggle to erase stigma.”  

Ever since I heard about this project, I’ve been determined to contribute.

I start a post, then I stop.

I write a post, then I delete it.

I did not realize how difficult it would be.

One of the hardest things about depression, for me, is explaining it to someone who doesn’t have it.  I’m no Jenny Lawson or Allie Brosh, and this is hard.  I’m still thinking about a cop-out.  I just gave you links to two of the best bloggers in the universe, who also happen to have struggled with depression, so…does that count as a post?

No?  No.  Ahem.  Okay.

People who don’t suffer from depression mostly don’t understand it, and even people who mean well often don’t “get it.”  They don’t know why you can’t just “get over it” or “look on the bright side.”

Well, I can’t speak for anyone else, but for me it is just not that easy.

Depression is like this crushing weight, this mantle of sadness that you can’t take off.  And it is so heavyYou don’t want to wear it, because it makes everything seem pointless and it drags the ground wherever you go.  You try to stand up under the weight of it, but it is persistent, and it pulls you down and down until you feel so small and insignificant that you think you might disappear.  And if it is really bad, you think everyone might be better off if you did.

Depression is sticky, like a spider’s web, and you’ll try and try, and you might think you finally got it all off, only to find that you can’t breathe and you can’t see and all you can feel is guilt – guilt that you’re crazy, and sticky, and always crying.  Guilt for not being strong enough to throw off the cloak and clean up the webs.  Guilt for being weak and for being in pain and for just wanting to hide.

Depression is like this bottomless pit and you just keep falling.  You might reach out and try to stop the fall – or you might be so far down in the dark that you don’t think you’re worth saving.

Depression is a bubble that you can’t pop.  You’re inside it, and you can see the shiny world outside, but you can’t quite reach it.  So you go around in your bubble and pretend that you are really a part of the world, but you know you are separate.  The bubble won’t let you feel the sun on your face and the laughter around you sounds flat and unreal.

I was diagnosed with depression as a teenager.  Twenty years later and it’s still a bitch.  But I’m still here.  I might just be putting one foot in front of the other some days, but I’m still here, and I’m still moving forward.

http://acanvasoftheminds.com/2014/01/07/blog-for-mental-health-2014/

http://www.suicidepreventionlifeline.org/

http://www.helpguide.org/mental/suicide_prevention.htm


Sit Down, Charlie Sheen, I’ll Take It From Here.

As I’ve displayed my Freshly Pressed badge so prominently (to the right, if you hadn’t noticed) I’m sure you’re all aware that My Grandma’s Room was an editor’s pick this week.

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Normally, I’d make a self-deprecating joke here, but unlike the majority of my posts, that one was really heartfelt and I’ve been crying all day wishing I could tell my Pop that I Won The Internet, so that he in turn could regale everyone he met with stories of my Writing Prowess, Innate Wisdom, and General Success At Life.  All of these tales would be highly embellished, and neither of us would care.

Instead, I will tell you how I became all Writerly and Such.  It’s an inspiring story, I’m sure. *insert hysterical laughter*

I’ve been a huge reader all my life, and last year I started re-collecting all my childhood favorites, like Anne of Green Gables, Little House on the Prairie, and Nancy Drew.

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Much like Anne Shirley, I was a pain in the ass as a child.  I was overly dramatic, I sometimes lied (confession:  It was me that cut the hair off all my Barbie dolls.  I cannot and could not ever play the banjo and I never wrote a song called Eagle.  Also, I’m ashamed that I didn’t come up with a better name for my song which didn’t exist.), I liked to read more than play, and I was bossy as all hell.

I haven’t changed much.

Anyway.  In the third grade I started a newspaper for the kids on my block and sold copies for 5 cents a piece.  It wasn’t a particularly long-running endeavor, mainly because as Head Writer, Editor, Copy Maker, and Boss Lady, I was too good to hawk my own wares on the corner and my friends grew tired of it quickly once they realized they weren’t getting paid.  Nine year olds have no work ethic anymore.  Especially for unpaid labor.

My next brush with fame came in the fifth grade.  On the same day that I opened a package of gum and won ten dollars, I also won 3rd place in a statewide essay contest.  Best. Day. Ever!

I don’t remember what the essay was about, but I do remember that I got to meet Bill Clinton (just the Governor then, not the President, although I’m sure I probably had something to do with his election).

You're welcome, dude.

You’re welcome, dude.

Also, they served really disgusting food at the banquet.

Not too long after that I tried my hand at fiction, penning The Big Black Bucket, which was a story about chickens living on a farm and plotting their escape.

Yeah.  Let that sink in for a minute.

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Those Chicken Run assholes.  I wrote it first, dicks.

Fast forward through years of bad poetry, bad decisions, and one too many people saying, rather accusingly, “But you’re so funny on Facebook…” and here I am, reading lots of awesome blogs, writing nonsense, and enjoying myself immensely.  THANK YOU!!

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Please stop me if I start referencing tiger blood, in any way, shape, or form.  Thanks, guys.


5 Reasons It’s Okay To Have Rogue Snakes Loose In Your Home

This is me, looking on the bright side.  Don’t blink.

Snakes.  Snakes are lovely.

Snakes eat mice.

Snakes are…snakes.

I’m trying this bullshit thing called cognitive behavioral therapy, because as I’ve been told a hundred fucking times, what you think is how you feel.  So I am going to feel homicidal GREAT about the snake INFESTATION going on in my home IN THE DEAD OF WINTER.

Ahem.

And I'm okay with this.  Really.

And I’m okay with this. Really.  Also, I really need to dust.  Don’t judge me.  I have snakes.

Five Reasons This Horror Nightmare Guest Is A-Okay:

1.  You can save money on your heating bill in an effort to make your home less homey for heat-seeking death worms reptiles.

2.  You can break your hip tone your thighs by clomping around your house in steel-toed boots and jumping a lot.

3.  Your kids will get really good at “I Spy” and this is a skill all children should have.

4.  You can finally make use of the ridiculous amount of swords you own.

5.  You can help the local economy by paying someone exorbitant sums of money a worthwhile fee to crawl around in your attic and say, “Ye-ah, where there’s one there’s usually a bunch more.”  This is helpful to know.

6.  You can save money on your water bill when an asshole a well-meaning friend tells you that the snakes are probably getting in through the plumbing so you won’t be using your bathroom.  Ever.  Again.

I know, that was actually six reasons, but I am just so good at this positivity thing that I decided to keep going.  Also, I am still in the market for a mongoose.


I refuse to believe I’m the only one.

I sleep with a white noise machine.  I used to use a big box fan,  but my husband would get pissy when I would point it at him because I didn’t want to be fanned, I just wanted to hear it fanning.

“White Noise” is what the machine is set to, because I’m afraid “Rain Forest” would make me wet the bed, and I’m a grown-ass woman.

I have to pee now just looking at that.

The noise machine is on a timer and shuts off after an hour.  Sometimes (a lot of times) it takes me longer than that to fall asleep.  After I’ve reset it two or three times, the “white noise” starts sounding different, like a beat, or words, or just sounds being repeated over and over instead of just the shhhhhhhhhh sound it is supposed to be making.

Today my husband and I were lazing in bed ( it was an extremely rare quiet moment in this madhouse) and he asked if I’d ever seen the movie “White Noise.”

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Me:  Yes!  The one with the TVs.  Creepy!

Him:  I can’t believe that sound helps you sleep.  (Probably thinking about last week when he left REDRUM on the bathroom mirror in steam, and when I got out of the shower I screamed and ran outside and wouldn’t go back in.  This is why we live in the middle of nowhere.  Because he’s an ass, and I often panic before I’m even dressed.)

Me:  I know.  And it’s weird how it changes.  The other night it was saying something over and over.

Him: ?

Me:  I don’t know, just words.  It was something with a “D,” maybe de-code, de-luge, Den-ver.  I don’t remember.

Him:  Jesus.

Me:  What?  It’s like when you are surrounded by chickens and it sounds like they are all saying your name.

Him:  *Snort*  That has only ever happened to you.

Me:  What?  No.

Him:  Yes.

Me:  Really?  That’s just me?

Him:  Falls asleep laughing while I lie there and try to force the crazy voice inside the noise maker to communicate with me again.  It didn’t work.

Note:  My family used to raise chickens.  I seriously wore headphones and carried my Walkman (yes, Walkman) because thousands of chickens all buck-buck-bawk-bawking at the same time would somehow coalesce into “Steph.  Stephanie.  Steph.”  And that is really fucking creepy.

I refuse to believe I’m the only one this happens to.  I’m not that crazy.

Right?


Half-Assed Holidays

I feel like I should write about the holidays, but I don’t really want to.  So I’m going to half-ass it, and tell you a few things that happened, and then move on to the important stuff, like sleeping and chickens.

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1.  I may have inadvertently caused my ferret to have a nervous breakdown.  Ferrets sleep 18 or more hours a day.  I thought my ferret loved red things, because he’s always stealing anything red and hiding it.  So I got him a red toy for Christmas and hung it in his cage.

He didn’t sleep for 24 hours until he killed it.  Could not rest until the evil red intruder was destroyed.  When I finally noticed what was happening, he was hissing and twitching like a ferret on crack.  (Or how I would imagine that.  My ferret does not do crack, so I don’t really know.)

Similar to this, only more crazy eyes.

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2.  I drank all my wine on Christmas Eve, which caused me to accidently insult my cousin.

Her:  You liked me when I was a kid.  (Meaning, you liked me, as opposed to my brothers.)

Me:  Whatever!  I like you now!   (Meaning, of course I like you!  Oh shit, that’s not what you meant.)

Her:  Wow.

Me:  Err.  Really!  I like you all the time.  Anyone thirsty?

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3.  I drank all my wine on Christmas Eve, which caused me to have no wine on Christmas Day.  To remedy this, I sent my husband to the store to get another three more bottles.  Don’t judge me, Christmas is hard.

When he went up to the register they said, “I’m sorry sir, we don’t sell alcohol on Jesus’ birthday.”  Oops.  My bad.  (Sorry, Jesus and embarrassed husband.)

No, Santa, not today.

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3.  Cracker Barrel poisoned me somehow and I had an allergic reaction in Wal-Mart, which made me really confused, and I told my daughter to either get the microwave or don’t, we gotta go.  She’s 4.  There was no microwave.  I’m pretty sure they thought I had found more wine.

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4.  I ate half a pound cake for breakfast one morning.  As I was on the last bite my daughter wanted some, and in what was not one of my finer moments, I told her it had butter in it.  Because she hates butter, and I didn’t want to share.  That was not a lie, because  I am 95% percent sure pound cake has butter in it.  Mom-Of-The-Fucking-Year.  That’s me.

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5.  New Year’s Eve.  I’m not going into that.  But I do want to quote my husband.  “Feel free to put some pants on and join us.”  Again, he said, “Feel free to put some pants on and join us.”  He’s just lucky I wasn’t feeling well, because that sounds like a challenge if I’ve ever heard one.

 

 


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