Posted in Thoughts

pain

I’m starting to wonder if it’s time to start using a cane. Or maybe a crutch.

Let me start from the beginning.

This weekend was originally going to be relaxing. Get a few things done around the house, maybe a quick shopping trip to look at some new work clothes (which I need desperately). Then I found out that the kiddo had called her grandma and wanted her grandma to take her and a friend to a local science museum, lovingly called “the Little Zoo” when she was younger. Kiddo had found out that her friend had never been, which she found astonishing since it was such a big part of her childhood.

I was miffed at first, for several reasons. For one thing, I had already made tentative plans with the grandma in question (my mother) to do the aforementioned shopping, and to also go over to her house to re-dye my hair, as the roots are coming in and I am starting to look a bit skunk-like. Also, I was a bit upset that plans were being made and changed all around me, and no one had bothered to tell me. At all. When I mentioned this to my mother, her answer was, “She would have asked you to take her, but you always say no.”

Okay. A few things.

First off, the kiddo hardly ever talks to me of her own accord unless she needs me to buy something for her. This is because I am always the bad guy. The one who gets on her case about school work, who bugs her about having dishes in her room. And yes, I probably would have said no about taking her to the Little Zoo, but I had a good reason. My chronic pain issue (that is probably fibromyalgia, although it was never officially diagnosed and won’t be now that I can’t go to the doctor) had been bothering me for most of the week. That’s why I was hoping for a relaxing weekend, where I could limp around in peace and quiet and hopefully be better before the next week started. And I would have been fine if she wanted to go, I said that I couldn’t, and then she went to her grandma, but that’s never the way it happens. I’m not sure how she thinks that I will always say no when I’m never even asked.

And yes, my mother is probably reading this right now. She knows how I feel.

I ended up going with the kiddo, her friend, and my mom to the Little Zoo, mostly out of guilt. It was a beautiful day, the first sunny day we’ve had in a long time, so it would have been a great trip if it hadn’t been for the pain. I was already limping when we got there, but walking a couple of miles on top of that certainly didn’t help. My flare ups are usually centered around my hips and lower back, but I’ve been having issues with my knees and my right foot recently as well. Basically, I feel like a very old woman stuck in a 40 year old body. That is part of what makes this so frustrating. I’m only 40. I shouldn’t be having issues like this yet.

I also hate all the doctors and studies that say that exercise is supposed to help this. Okay. I got exercise. I feel 100% worse and still hurt two days later. And now I am at my super professional job trying to pretend that I feel great, because nothing less is tolerated, when all I want to do is lay down and cry.

It’s tiring, it’s frustrating, and I hate it.

So the cane thing. Sometimes, because of the pain in different parts of the body (it’s not always consistent where it wants to give me grief), I am sometimes not only having a hard time walking, but having a hard time keeping my balance on top of that. I do wonder if people would think I was being silly if I got one, or if I was being ostentatious or overly dramatic. I know I shouldn’t worry about that, but I do, especially at work.

I did have fun though, even if I will be paying for it for several more days. Here’s a picture of a meerkat. Because the Little Zoo has meerkats and they are adorable.

meerkat

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Posted in Thoughts

school

My daughter and I are very different in many ways, and unfortunately for her, also quite the same. She has been having trouble at school for a while now. Her grades are in the toilet and she doesn’t want to keep up with anything. Even when I have tried to help her with homework (at times literally telling her the answers and having her write it down, just to get it finished and turned in), I still get met with open hostility towards it.

This is completely foreign to me. When I was in school, I was a raging perfectionist, often to my own detriment. Just giving up was never an option for my psyche. I don’t quite know how to handle this, but if she’s not careful, she will not pass this year. We’ve had enough issues with her school’s administration – staying there for an extra year would be disastrous, especially given her emotional state.

We’ve tried after school tutoring with her teachers, professional tutoring services, and nothing seems to work. She has been seen by psychologists and psychiatrists, as well as her primary doctors. Nothing seems to help.

I’m not necessarily looking for suggestions or advice (although I would welcome it at this point). I’m mostly just screaming into the void so that I can be as calm as possible at home.

Posted in Thoughts

loss

Warning for discussion of depression and suicide.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

My daughter is learning a valuable lesson right now.

We found out last week that one of her friends committed suicide.  This was a young girl, not sure of her exact age, but she was in the 8th grade class at school. I’m guessing she was either 13 or 14. While she wasn’t a super close friend, this was someone who had been in my daughter’s art class for the past few years and they had fun joking around together a lot. My daughter is also very sensitive, very empathetic, so this is hitting her very hard.

It’s tough to watch. This is one of those situations as a parent where you wish you could take away their pain and suffering, but there really isn’t anything you can do to help, except let them know that you love them. We went to the funeral this weekend and, while it was very sad, it was also very uplifting seeing these young people come together and support each other. Lots of hugs. Lots of tears. But that’s healthy. That’s the way it should be when you lose someone.

This is the first time my daughter has ever lost someone she was close to.

There were some family members that have passed, but she was still a baby and doesn’t remember anything about them. This will be the first one that she remembers losing. This will stick with her for at least most, if not all, of her life. She has spent the past week staring at her phone, looking at pictures and videos of her friend, smiling and looking happy. No one saw this coming.

My daughter has had her own issues with depression and anxiety, including suicidal thoughts. The school knows this and has worked with her as much as they can, although they can only do so much with the resources they have. She has been going to two different counselors for a few years now, which has helped quite a bit, but there are still underlying thoughts and emotions that she has a difficult time controlling. I think part of why I have been having a hard time with this (including being in tears for two straight days, even though I have never met this particular friend) is because I can’t help but imagine what it would be like if this were my kid. It’s terrifying.

What I am hoping is that, as tragic as this has been, that it has also shown my daughter how something like this affects everyone around them. She will understand why I get so worried and scared when she goes through a bad phase. Part of me hates that I am taking a tragedy that belongs to another person, another family, and making it about us, but I think that is human nature. It’s how we process things. And really, it’s all we can do. Whatever pain brought this young girl to do this, I hope that she is at peace now. All we can do is remember her and learn from her experience.