ARGH.

Stressed out womanWe were served one week ago with an eviction notice. For one week I have been unable to sleep more than three or four hours at a time. Unable to eat more than one small meal a day. I’ve had migraines. I’ve vomited, and I’m in a flare up. I’m having some pretty bad PTSD nightmares. My speech is slurred and I can’t stay out of the loo.

Thanks so much for this.

The vacancy rate in Halifax is 1.5%. There was just a piece published in the Chronicle Herald yesterday about how young people aren’t able to come to Halifax anymore because the rents are not only ridiculously high, but you’re lucky if you can even find housing.

So you tell me in what world two decent tenants are facing homelessness by the word of one person?

How can one person have the power to throw our lives into such upheaval? We had been nothing but kind and considerate since we moved in. If this individual didn’t like us, she had three months while we sublet, to change her mind about signing a lease with us. Yet she chose to.  She had ample opportunities to tell us if she had a problem with us, but she didn’t.

Every time I asked, (and I asked multiple times because I am not an asshole, and certainly didn’t want to disrupt anyone else) whether or not we disturbed her, or bothered her, we were told, “No, I never hear you guys.”

Any time she was rude to us, which was frequently, we took it on the chin and just went upstairs. Throughout ten months of incessant barking, we said nothing. Her girlfriend practically lived here, contributed nothing, but again, we said nothing. Why? Because we honestly liked these two people, we thought we were friends. But now I see we were just being taken advantage of.

Even though we did ALL the cleaning inside and outside (except lawn, that was the roommate’s only job), we said nothing because we wanted to live in a clean home whether she pitched an effort or not. We are not dirtbags.

The backyard is piled up with items that don’t belong to us. A bio composter of some kind, prior tenant. A wooden flower bed, prior tenant. Coffee table, roommate, stool, prior tenant, wagon, roommate. Pallets, roommate.  You get the drift.

We have spent the better part of 10 months living in a room together. The couple of times we attempted to use the living room (after we cleaned downstairs for hours) we were kicked out and ended up retreating to our bedroom.

We have felt disrespected THE ENTIRE time we have lived here. It’s not a good feeling. Again, we never involved the landlord because this was not a long term solution for us, and you DON’T INVOLVE LANDLORDS IN ROOMMATE DISPUTES in Halifax.

I’m going to have to schedule an appointment with my doctor because I’m having difficulty coping with all the stress this has brought on. I’m in menopause and I suffer from PTSD and Fibromyalgia, so that means I go from angry to crying in a flash. A hot flash. yuk yuk.

One thing I do to cope is clean, but this place is sparkling and I have run out of things to clean now.  I have begun packing, in case we are tossed out on to the street after our hearing.

Who needs this shit? Honestly.

I feel like I’ve been bullied my entire life, but none more than being a grown, disabled woman.  From constantly having to prove my disabilities, to narcissistic abuse from family and a few friends. I have taken so much shit from so many people over the years, that I have finally reached full. The shit runneth over.

I just want to lie on a beach with a book and forget all this ever happened. Including moving to Halifax.

To address our need for immediate housing, we have started a Go Fund Me to assist with moving costs, utility hookups, damage deposit etc. If you are able to donate, it would be greatly appreciated, if not, a simple share or prayer helps. Thank you so much for your kindness. I really appreciate my online friends and the blogging community.

 

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

S.

 

Image Credit

http://www.clker.com/clipart-634242.html

So You’re Crying A Lot, Feel Like You’re Losing Your Shit & Sweating Like a Construction Worker? Oh Snap. It’s Menopause.

menopause_illustration_libertyantoniasadler_metro
Illustration by Liberty Antonia Sadler

I’m in menopause. Full blown menopause. I’m 44 so it’s early onset from a prior medical incident following emergency surgery for Endometriosis. Endometriosis is a disease that not a lot of people know about or understand but lemme tell you, it affects A LOT of women. Roughly 10-20% of women in North America suffer from Endometriosis which affects everything menstrual cycles, mood swings, pain. So much pain. You see get these cysts that develop from hormone levels; environmental things like the foods we eat, or the chemicals we are exposed to as fetuses and young developing women. These cysts over time multiply and multiply. They sometimes rupture which, depending on the size and location of the cyst can result in not only toxic material flowing in to your body which can cause sepsis. It can result in many emergency room visits, and Ladies, don’t you dare think this isn’t ambulance worthy- it is. It will be the most excruciating thing you will ever experience next to childbirth. Truth, and I don’t have children, but fuck me- that looks mighty painful. These cysts then go on to form colonies of cysts that can fuse your organs together. My ENTIRE endocrine system is fused in these cysts. That means my ovaries, well I only had one partially working one anyway, my bladder, bowel and uterus are fused. I was unable to carry children. I got pregnant once and I had miscarriage. After an emergency surgery, as my body was in sepsis I was placed on a drug called Lupron which medically induced menopause. After that, I was prescribed Depo Provera for 6 months before getting the Mirena IUD which completely stopped my periods for 7 years. I started experiencing the premenopausal symptoms around age 39 then full blown Menopause this year. It’s been well over a year and a half since my last period.

I don’t have anyone to talk about this with. I mean, you don’t talk about menopause, it’s something old ladies get. Right? So we often suffer in silence with all these symptoms because, it’s embarassing. Why? I’m not sure. I don’t have a mom or a step mom to talk to, and I seem to be the first one of my friends going through this, that I know of anyway. While I am recovering from pneumonia (I’m so hopped up on meds and this relentless cough) I decided to write a blog post about this.

First thing you need to understand ladies: You’re NOT GOING CRAZY. It’s a fact of life and the end of a natural cycle in a woman’s life. Some of us will have it sooner than later, some of us will have it harder than others. It’s not gross. Periods were gross. I won’t get in to the gory details, men can’t handle this talk, and it’s my hope a few men will read this so they can understand their partners a little better.

Your hormones are battling it out for sheer dominance at every given moment of the day. Your emotions will become hijacked, your mind will race with thoughts of anger, frustration, sadness, hunger, remorse, guilt, fatigue. This can take place over the course of an hour. It’s kind of like developing Borderline Personality Disorder.

My food tastes have changed dramatically. I don’t crave the sugar and the salt like I once did. Because of other health issues, immune system disorders, CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) Fibromyalgia & Osteoarthritis) I eat a fairly clean diet. I reduced my animal proteins and increased plant proteins, I avoid gluten and dairy as much as I can. I eat as organic as I can, I don’t consume alcohol* so this combined with fairly regular low impact exercise I have kept my weight down but it’s not uncommon that women gain weight during this time.

The Crying. Oh God, the crying. Unless you’re a stern, or staunch woman, you will experience bouts of tears that appear out of nowhere. You will cry from anything ranging to past memories, to things you are grateful for. My friend bought me a book that I wanted – BOOM- crying. Someone letting you cut in a line when you’re in a hurry- BOOM- crying. An elderly person wins the big prize on The Price is Right- BOOM-crying. So help you God if they win BOTH showcases! It’s an emotional roller coaster. I recommend maybe a COSTCO membership just to save on Kleenex and chocolate.

WHY AM I ON FIRE? Is this what spontaneous human combustion feels like? I think this is what spontaneous human combustion feels like. I NEED TO GET THIS BLOODY SHIRT OFF!!!! All that needed to be bolded because this is how it will go through your mind when a hot flash kicks in. BUY HANDHELD FANS IN BULK. Those bitches break. Mine just broke this past week and I tell you what.. scream .. I need that fucking thing and they are APPARENTLY fucking seasonal so you can’t find one goddamn hand held and/or power fan in this Godless city. Sorry for the cursing. THAT’S gonna happen a lot more too. Thanks to the rage of a hundred angry, hungry, fighting dogs that has now set up pit in your head, frequent shows, all access, anyone can view for free! Be sure to include children because Lord are they little shits now. It’s not their fault. I blame the internet and handheld devices. It’s commercialism’s fault. They’ve fried your brain a bit as a parent and as developing youth because…. what’s on Facebook/Pinterest/ Twitter/YouTube/Netflix……?” It’s not your fault, society has changed us for the worse. We’re all just slightly bigger dicks for it.

Hot flashes will begin in your chest area and sweep up your neck and face until, unless you have a fan, you will literally pour water from your body. You’ll sweat more. It’s gross. I can’t often wear make up because of it. What’s the point without a fan your make up is no match for a hot flash. Oooh! Cosmetic companies: Create makeup for hot flash women. Wait, it would probably include some carcinogen and cause cancer. Fuck. Scrap that. Wear light layers and go with my bulk handheld fan recommendation. Get a small power fan and keep one next to where you sit in the daytime, in the evening time, and next to your bed. Drink LOTS of water. If you don’t you’ll get A LOT of headaches. It’s because of the hot flashes and all the sweating. A good way to tell if you’re dehydrated is the color of your pee. The darker it is, the more water you should pound. It should increasingly get lighter then clear. If it doesn’t, you may have an infection. (bladder, urinary tract, kidney) Go see a doctor for God sake what’s wrong with you?

There are some natural things out there you can take in supplement form you can find at any pharmacy or nutrition store. Black Cohosh, flax seed, Calcium, Vitamin D, Wild Yam, Ginseng, DHEA, Dong Quai, Soy (if you’re not allergic of course) Currently I have no access to these right now so I’m going on nothing.

You’ll want to keep a towel nearby to cover up the sopping wet mess you will constantly leave on your sheets and pillow cases. Trust me, lay that towel down on the wet spot and go to sleep because Girl, you’re tired and you a’int got time to wash sheets in the middle of the damn night what are you doing?? You’re just gonna be in the same boat tomorrow. But you will need to frequent up your sheet changing regime. Keep a change of clothes nearby and change them if you are wet, I think this could be why I got pneumonia.

It’s like going through puberty all over again I’ve noticed my anxiety has kicked up several notches. You’ll probably experience bouts of insomnia simply because you can’t shut your brain off. I also went through some adult acne. I think my voice is even deeper than it was. Keep to a healthy diet and exercise the way you want to, it can help and it’s just common sense. You may get some unexpected unflattering hair growth as well. Tweezers and good depilatory creams will become a must.

Your chances of having a child, or another child is done now. You may need to process this. Cry it out, that is how you process things. You have to allow yourself to feel things in order to move past it. This is true with any traumatic event we encounter. Think about it, cry about it, pray about it, have some inner dialogue about it, eat some dairy free ice cream and you’ll probably move on and feel better.

Your sex drive will probably decrease Our bodies use sex to procreate mainly so once the need to procreate ends you will probably feel the urge a little less. You may have to put in a little more effort with your partner during this time. That effort would include finding things to stimulate your desires, discussing things with them so they don’t think it’s them, which can leave them feeling a little neglected. We should always show love to our partners- when they deserve it. Those assholes.

You should experience some emotional growth as well as some confidence during this time With maturity comes an understanding that shit just is what it is. You can’t control or change everything. You are not Superwoman. You are not a unique snowflake. You don’t have to have the body of a 25 year old because, Surprise Bitch! You’re NOT 25. I for example, am just a broad. Just a broad getting through day by day through the Grace of God.

It’s not all bad. It can be pretty freeing to not give a fuck anymore.

I really hope this post has prepared you a little bit. Maybe you’ll learn what to expect and can prepare. Share this with your lady friends, share this with partners. Because Menopause is a family event. It will affect your loved ones, your friends, your work, your energy levels and it IS a big deal because of all these things.. I often wonder, if men experienced menopause would there be paid leaves and loads of information out there for them. Possibly a national holiday in honor of it. National Men’s Awareness Month. They can have March, no one likes March. Look how much research has gone into extending erections.

Why can’t we just talk about it?

*update: (June 2019) I have begun drinking again. Because fuck menopause, and a little alcohol seems to help with the hot flashes.

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

And take care of yourself.

Sam

The Blog Broad
This ol’ Broad..

Images

Menopause Your Personal Sauna https://metro.co.uk/2015/08/25/21-things-you-never-knew-about-the-menopause-5341203/

Profile picture taken by me.

Blogmas Not So Much

The Blog Broad BlogmasI started to write Blogmas posts but quite frankly, I’m just not feeling writing about Christmas.  See my first Blogmas post here.

It’s all so commercial.  Geared towards the consumer.  I haven’t been a proper consumer in years.  I haven’t been able to work in years.  I’m trying to do things from home.  It’s picking up but it’s slow going.   When you’re poor and chronically ill and in pain daily, your priorities change in life.  Where, at one time I fretted over things like the perfectly decorated Christmas Tree, or making sure I baked enough cookies.  Will I get all my Christmas shopping done in time?  Now I think things like, can I stay awake long enough to visit with people?  How many bed ridden days will this holiday bring?  Can I handle the stress of the travels?  Am I going to break down and cry in front of her family?  Am I going to annoy my partner because I’m so exhausted I’m going to need to rest when she wants to go out?  Please don’t let my dog poop in the house.  There’s a lot of stairs in that house and the house itself is huge.  My body is not used to that, so my legs and back often give out while I’m there.  It’s embarrassing.  ME/CFS is embarrassing.  The only other people who understand it, typically, are those with the disease.  To others, we’re just depressed or lazy or need to get out more or or or.

My partner and I also both lost our fathers.  Hers to cancer about 16 months ago; mine at his own choice by cutting me out 18 months ago.  The loss of her father still hangs heavily on everyone’s hearts.  He was a great man.  A kind, gentle and caring man; one of a kind.  My father, still alive, has always been kind of a jerk.  Selfish, immature and somewhat ignorant of the world.  He’s not a loving man.  Nevertheless, he’s my Dad.  I still love him and his absence hurts.  My mother’s absence hurts; we haven’t spoke in 5 years.  Family is actually incredibly important to me and it’s always bothered me that mine is so fractured.

Being chronically ill disables you.  Physically and mentally.  Unfortunately many of us fall into that grey area on paper where you don’t qualify for provincial or federal benefits.  Most people require legal representation to get those federal benefits.  If you can’t work, you rely on your “family”.  My family consists of my partner “C”, my dog Lucy, my partner’s family and my sisters from other misters.  These are my close gal pals that I confide in.  That confide in me.  They’ve helped me many times.  I trust these women.  In my life, I haven’t been able to rely on or really trust my own blood family, but I can trust these women.  They are my support.

I have other things on my mind right now besides Christmas.  I’m more concerned about getting by day by day.  My partner’s job could be gone any time because there’s no job security where she works.  I can’t go in to detail about what she does as it’s kind of a public job.  It’s stressful.  So, are we out spending money on presents?  No, we’re trying to keep up with bills and the ever increasing cost of eating healthfully which costs just as much as our rent I might add.

Do I want to write a holiday inspired post everyday?  No.  Not really?  I just don’t give a tiny rat’s ass right now.  I’m still battling a virus, my partner has it, my wrist is still healing/broken.  I won’t know unless I sit at the hospital emergency for hours and hours because let’s face it, it’s not really an emergency, I just don’t have a doctor and really need an X-ray.

B’ah.  Humbug.

I need a nap.

The Blog Broad tag line
Sam

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Just a Broad

The Blog Broad Blog

When did you start blogging/why?

I started blogging 5 years ago with the encouragement of friends, under a pen name- Sparky Lee Anderson.  I chose a pen name because if my blog was terrible I guess it would never be attached to my name and no one in my family and no one I went to school with would know I failed as a writer.  I came up with the name as I was “sparking” a doobie one night while watching X Files.  Having had a crush on Gillian Anderson who portrays Dana Scully since the show began, I went with Anderson.

I was published in 2014 in a Horror Anthology titled The Horror Addict’s Guide to Life.  I wrote a non-fiction piece titled, The Horror Addict’s Guide to Good Health.  I was proud of myself.  I worked hard at it and my submission was accepted and I would finally see my name in print.  Well, not exactly, my pen name was in print, and no one really cared that I got published.

Earlier this year I decided I wanted to change how I write.  Lose the pen name and write as myself.  I came up with a new blog title which I thought really encapsulated who I was as a writer.  Stephen King I am not (although he is and always will be my biggest idol.  Ever.  In the universe.).  I am however, just a broad (my Facebook profile states just that- Just a Broad) and I blog about a variety of topics; barring Beauty and Lifestyle – there are plenty of people that blog about that.  The Blog Broad was born.

But why don’t you blog about beauty or lifestyle?

I am broke.

I am 43

I have never left Canada

I”m a lesbian

I’m usually in sweatpants or jammies

I have bigger things to think about than the right shade of concealer or “maximum coverage” whatever that is.  Isn’t that just a bag over your head?  There.  There’s your maximum coverage.

*if you are reading this and you’re a beauty or lifestyle blogger, my apologies.  Your make up and/or trips look great and/or intriguing.  Thank you for reading.

 

So what do you write about?

Well, I write about what it’s like being in a lesbian relationship like in The Mysteries of the Lesbian Relationship Revealed  or in Things I Do That Drive My Partner Crazy .

I also write about my feelings for my narcissistic parents.  Like in I Can’t Throw it Away, These Things are Valuable to Some People

I get annoyed with technology a lot.  I write about that too, in I’m Drowning in Notifications I rant about having to be notified for everything you do online.  If you’re a subscriber for example, you were notified when I published this piece.

I write frequently about dealing with my many health issues, like PTSD, ME/CFS/Fibromyalgia, Depression, Anxiety and chronic pain.  Sometimes I write humorous posts because honestly, my humor is all I have left that’s still in tact.

I even write about weird things that happen to me.  Like in A Ghost Sat on Me, I write about some paranormal experiences I’ve had here in Saint John, New Brunswick Canada

I try to be encouraging, supportive and respectful to other bloggers.  There’s enough nastiness in the world and not enough kindness.

 

So, what’s the point of your blog?

It’s for me first of all.  It helps, flushing out your feelings on to the keyboard, sending it out in to cyberspace even if no one reads is cathartic and therapeutic.  I like to make people laugh and smile, so if I can do that to one person a day…   In addition, if there’s one more depressed lesbian out there suffering with PTSD and chronic pain well then, maybe this blog is for you and maybe we can exchange emails.

What is your endgame Sam?

Boy, I’m glad I asked.  Eventually, I would like to publish books.  Books I have written just to be clear.  Preferably non fiction, something humorous and relatable to others.  I’d like to publish a book of my poetry as well as a book of short stories.  This is my goal.

The act of blogging regularly helps enforce consistency and setting writing schedules prepares me for a career in writing which is what I want.  I’ve wanted it since I was 6 years old when I got my first typewriter.  I’m running out of time!

Tell me, why do you blog and what got you started?  Did you use a pen name?  What are your writing goals?

 

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

Sam

Getting Personal…

The Blog Broad on WordPress

You may have noticed my absence the past 4 days.   Maybe you didn’t, listen to me- talking like I’m somebody.  I was exhausted and having migraines.  I have to force myself to take a break every so often to avoid staring at a screen because it’s giving me headaches.  I think I need new glasses too.   So I took a break and watched some TV and slept whenever I could.  The season changes usually prompt long bouts of insomnia.  I’m not really sure why.   All I know is that my anxiety levels are as high as Willie Nelson on a Sunday afternoon.  

I’m trying hard to remain gluten free in an effort to reduce the inflammation in my body and skin but it’s making me irritable.   I want all the sweets and pizzas and battered things and why do I have the sudden urge to punch you in the tit?  I’m trying to eat things like fruits and vegetables and nuts and seeds I want a donut and it’s not going well.   I guess the sugar withdrawal is making me even more for the love of God give me a cookie tired than usual.

In the past week I’ve written 3 pieces for the Higher Living Blog so at least I have been writing and I definitely haven’t been sitting around binge watching Horror movies and the last 2 seasons of Downton Abbey that I missed resentfully eating seeds instead of the pie I crave.  

Another exhilarating thing happening in my life is flea extermination.  Shout out to the neighbors’ ghetto-ass kitties for bringing the gift that keeps on giving to our 6 unit building.  My many bites are healing and the house and dog have never been cleaner.   The recent temperature, constant vacuuming and homemade flea treatment has just about eradicated the problem.

I’ve also spent some time researching blogging tips and tools and ways to improve my views.  Analyzing my posts made me arrive at the conclusion that people seem to respond better when I talk about personal things.

Here’s something personal.  I lick potato chips before I eat them.

To be honest, I have a lot of anxiety and am feeling a little depressed.  The cooler weather has made the pain worse, it’s harder to walk around now and my sleep is really off.   I feel fat and out of shape.   My clothes all feel tight and constricting.   My body is swollen and I feel ugly. 

I’m off to stand in front of the open refrigerator reminiscing about the good times…

please check out my post “Things I do That Drive my Partner Crazy 

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

Sam

My First Liebster Award On the Blog Broad

liebster awardI was nominated for the Liebster Award by Lavender and Levity .  This blog was designed as a coping tool for Rejection Sensitive Dysphoria (RSD) which goes hand in hand with ADHD.  It’s defined as “an extreme emotional pain and sensitivity triggered by the perception (not necessarily the reality) that a person has been rejected, teased or unfairly criticized by important people in their life.” (Wikipedia)  Often, these emotions can be quite destructive and usually manifests as frustration, anger, sensitivity or depression so it’s important to learn how to manage them.  Lavender and Levity takes her anxieties in stride often with a twist of humor.  I highly suggest you check her out and I thank her very much for the nomination.  I wish nothing but the best for my fellow chronic pain/illness/depression warriors.  Stay strong!

 

The Liebster Award is given to bloggers by other bloggers.  It is intended to recognize and encourage another writer’s work and efforts.  It also helps to shed light on what may be some lesser known blogs.  Essentially, once you are nominated, you pass along 10 other nominations and so on.  Some people actually find it an annoyance, but I can’t see how increasing traffic to your blog and discovering new writers is annoying.  It’s an honor, and I will take it.  Thank you!

 

I have been blogging for about 5 years now.  Originally under Sparky Lee Anderson but I didn’t want to write under a pen name anymore, so I left one final post on that, and the Blog Broad was born.  It’s a name I’ve been thinking about for close to 2 years and I really hope to register a domain with it soon.  I try to use humor while living (coping) with chronic illness, ME/CFS {Fibromyalgia}, Degenerative Disc Disease, Arthritis, Depression,Anxiety and PTSD.  It basically helps me from losing my mind completely.  I feel like I have changed and grown a lot since the original conception of my blog.

 

The instructions for accepting the Liebster are:

 

  • Create a new post thanking the person who nominated you, link their blog and insert the award graphic.
  • Answer the questions provided to you, share a little bit about yourself.
  • Develop a new set of questions for your nominations to answer
  • Nominate 10 others and share your post with them so they see it.

 

My Questions from Lavender and Levity

 

 

  • What is your Myers-Briggs personality type?  Do you think it describes you?

 

First, I needed to take an online test, which I found here .  I am INFP: The Idealist. (Introversion- I, Intuition-N, Feeling- F, and Perception-P)  This states that I am an introvert, that is guided by my intuition.  I make decisions based on feelings rather than thinking and I perceive rather than judge.  It states, and I quote “that the main characteristics of an INFP include:

  • Loyal and devoted
  • Sensitive to feelings
  • Warm caring and interested in other people
  • Strong written communication skills
  • Prefers to work alone
  • Values close relationships
  • Focuses on the ‘big picture’ rather than the details

INFPs tend to be introverted, quiet and reserved. Being in social situations tends to drain their energy and they prefer interacting with a select group of close friends. While they like to be alone, this should not necessarily be confused with shyness. Instead, it simply means that INFPs gain energy from spending time alone. On the other hand, they have to expend energy in social situations.

INFPS typically rely on intuition and are more focused on the big picture rather than the nitty-gritty details. They can be quite meticulous about things they really care about or projects they are working on, but tend to ignore mundane or boring details.

INFPs place an emphasis on personal feelings and their decisions are more influenced by these concerns rather than by objective information. They also dislike conflict and try to avoid it. When conflicts or arguments do arise, they usually focus more on how the conflict makes them feel rather than the actual details of the argument. During arguments, they might seem overly emotional or even irrational. However, they can also be good mediators by helping the people involved in a conflict identify and express their feelings.

When it comes to making decisions, INFPs like to keep their options open. They often delay making important decisions just in case something about the situation changes. When decisions are made, they are usually based on personal values rather than logic.

Because they are so reserved and private, it can be difficult for other people to get to know INFPs. They tend to be quite devoted to their circle of close friends and family and place a high importance on the feelings and emotions of their loved ones. Much of their energy is focused inward and characterized by intense feelings and strong values. They tend to be very loyal to the people they love and to beliefs and causes that are important to them.

INFPs tend to be very creative, artistic and spiritual. They are often skilled with language, but may prefer to express their thoughts and feelings through writing. Because they have strong ethics and values, they also become passionate about advocating or defending their beliefs. While they feel strongly about their own values, INFPs are also interested in learning more about others and are willing to listen and consider many sides of an issue.

INFPs also have strong interests in making the world a better place. In addition to wanting to gain a greater understanding of themselves and how they fit into the world, they are also interested in how they can best help others. People with this personality type spend a lot of time exploring their own purpose in life and thinking about how they can use their skills and talents to best serve humanity. (http://www.onlinepersonalitytests.org/mbti/infp)

 

Well, I’d say that pretty accurately describes me.  

  1.   Which technological invention of the past 100 years could you least live without?

Probably my hair dryer.  I use it everyday and my hair would be a curly frizzy mess without it and my ceramic round brush.

  1.     If it were solely up to you (no medical, job or family demands to dictate otherwise), what time would you go to bed at night and what time would you get up?

I’d probably stay up all night and go to bed around 8 am or so.  I like the quiet during these hours.  I also like watching the sun rise, having a good breakfast then going back to bed.  It happens often when I am writing plus I don’t sleep well at night so I’m sometimes up all night anyway.

  1.  What is your favorite pizza topping?

Mushrooms.  All the mushrooms.  (But only if they’re fresh, canned mushrooms can go in the trash where they belong)

  1.     What superpower would you choose if you could have only one?

I think I’d go with invisibility.  I have (embarrassingly) spent time fantasizing about being in the kitchens of fabulous restaurants and bakeries going unseen while I sample all of their wares.  I used to have a recurring donut dream, right before my monthly, where I was behind the glass just grabbing donuts of every kind, taking bites out of all of them.  

  1.     Again, assuming no financial, medical, job or family demands, and that all options were available where you live, would you rather drive your car or take public transportation?

That’s a no-brainer for me.  If I had a car, I’d use it.  I hate public transportation because I hate people’s smells.  I hate loud people, drunk people, smelly people- period.

  1.     If you could only eat stereo-typically “breakfast” foods, “lunch” foods or “dinner” foods for the rest of your life, which would you pick?

Breakfast foods.  I LOVE bacon, eggs, hash browns, pancakes, waffles, omelettes, fruits, and cereals.  I could very easily live off that and when I go somewhere that serves all day breakfast, I usually announce it like a BINGO caller, “Oh! ALL DAY Breakfast”

So that’s a little bit about me, again I’d like to thank Lavender and Levity for the nomination and here are my 10 nominees:

A Fractured Faith 

Oh Words 

Sunlight in Winter  

Sleeping Tiger  

Bethany K  

GabFrab  

Confessions of a Brat  

M.U.D. Life  

DGGYST (Damn, Girl, Get Your Shit Together)  

Spooky Action at a Distance  

Here are your questions:

  1. If you could travel through time and live in any era, when would you choose?
  2. What was the last good book you read and why would you recommend it to a friend?
  3. If you could change one thing you’ve done in the past year, what would it be and why?
  4. Tell us one of your guilty pleasures.
  5. What is the goal of your blog?
  6. When did you start writing?
  7. If you could fight a celebrity in a boxing ring, knowing you’d win, who would it be?
  8. What’s your biggest pet peeve?
  9. What show can you simply, not miss?
  10. What game (Board, card or video) are you best at?

 

Thanks for reading.

 

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

Sam

Another Night, Another Dreamish Sleep

A guest blog post by Ocean Hayward

 

Anxiety

Here I am, up again. I start off well- I  doze off into dreamland and then am awakened from my slumber (usually because I need to urinate); then it starts. I try to go back to sleep, but I worry.  I worry that I won’t be able to get back to sleep. Then I worry that I’ll be tired in the morning because I didn’t sleep. And then I worry about all of the things I didn’t manage to get done and the things I need to do. And the worry goes on, and on and on (till the breaka-breaka dawn, yo!)

 

Anxiety.

 

So this morning I awoke, and I started thinking about my anxiety, and the fact that I have always had it. Or did I?  When did I start feeling anxiety all the time? Was it, in fact, always a part of my life?

 

I tried to remember the first time I felt really anxious. My first thought was that it was my very first day of school (which is ironic because I am a teacher now and tomorrow… no, technically now, today is my first day of school for this year.) So my first day of grade primary, I took the bus by myself and got to the school. All the kids at the elementary school were playing in the school yard. I remember sitting on a bench in front of the school by myself. Worried. Worried because I didn’t know where I was supposed to go.

 

Before the summer, they had given us an orientation to grade primary and I went to my mom to see the school and all of that. But I couldn’t remember what I was supposed to do or where I was supposed to go. Did they even tell me? Then the bell rang for the instructional day to start, and I sat on the bench and cried. I didn’t know what to do. A little girl saw me outside by myself, sobbing. She was arriving on a late bus. She asked me what was wrong. I replied that I didn’t know what I was supposed to do or where my class was. She said, “Maybe you’re in my class.”

 

Now, you may be thinking this is a happy story about how I made a new best friend who helped me find my way on my first day of school. Let me stop you. She did not become my best friend. In fact, I never made any real friends until I myself was in grade one. But that is another story and does not relate to my main point here and the epiphany I made this morning in my sleep-less state. Or maybe it’s not an epiphany at all. Maybe it’s just the ramblings of an extremely over-tired, worried, crazy teacher lady.

 

The kind little girl led me to her classroom. I arrived to a class full of strange faces. The girl told the teacher my situation and the teacher asked me my name. “No,” the teacher said. “You’re not in this class. This is grade one,” and she asked the other little girl to take me down the hall to the grade primary classroom.

 

I thought about this moment in my life- yes, I thought- it was all the people and commotion, this was the defining moment of when my anxiety started. Or was it?

 

It wasn’t.

 

I thought about the time my mother and I went to visit my Great-Aunt Evelyn and Great-Uncle Allison. (Yes, Allison is a man’s name too. Men with typically female names are prevalent in my family- my grandfather’s name was Beverly and I have other family members named Laurie.) Anyway, I was playing on the floor next to the Grandfather Clock in their sitting room. I guess I must have been too loud or something because I remember my mother snapping at me, “Children should be seen, not heard.” After that, I always worried about being too loud when we went visiting.

But no, that wasn’t the first time I felt anxiety. My mother was always yelling at me. “Clean up your toys” or “It’s time for bed” or “Get ready to go.” It was my mother yelling at me all the time that really triggered my anxiety. It wasn’t her fault though. My mother always acted like a bitch, but she really wasn’t. She would yell at me out of frustration. You see, she would ask me to do things, but I would be zoned out in my own little world of thoughts, play or television. As a teacher, I totally understand her frustration- you ask a child to do something again and again and again and they don’t listen. It makes total sense that she would eventually explode into a tirade of yelling and crazy bitchiness. In fact, I had such a problem with listening to both my mother and the teachers at school, in addition to a speech disability, that in grade primary I was sent to have my hearing checked. The result: I have perfect hearing. Not so great at listening.

 

This may be all coming together for you by now. Or maybe not. I’ll spell it out for you. I have recently been diagnosed with Adult ADHD. All of a sudden, my entire life makes sense.

 

Being diagnosed was a struggle. Throughout my teaching education and career, I learned a lot about ADHD and I suspected I may have it. Zoning out, daydreaming, messy, hyper… Of course, when I was growing up, ADHD wasn’t a thing. Or if it was, it wasn’t well known. But when I was sent to see a psychiatrist due to anxiety attacks, I asked if he could test me for ADHD. His response was that since I was a teacher and had been successful at life, I couldn’t possibly have ADHD. But he didn’t know my history, and how could he? Psychiatrists don’t have the time to learn our histories in this age of information overload, unequal work-life balances, and Donald Trump where everyone has some kind of mental illness. (Really, it should be called societal illness since we seem to be creating a lot of this madness ourselves!)

 

If he knew my history, he would know everything I’ve just explained to you. He would also know that throughout school, my assignments were often incomplete and late. He would also know that I struggled with attendance and drinking too much during my early university years and actually flunked out. I returned later, and turned that anxiety into motivation.

 

So this morning I had an epiphany. Which came first? The chicken or the egg, the ADHD or the anxiety. They are connected, you see. But if I had to articulate what came first, I think it is the ADHD. You see when you are constantly living within your own mind, you miss things. A LOT OF THINGS. Instructions, conversations, deadlines, places where you put your things. You miss out on so many things because of your inability to focus, and then comes the anxiety. What was I supposed to do and how was I supposed to do it? How come I can’t remember that my husband told me about Trump watching the solar eclipse when we had an entire conversation about it? (He thinks it was a conversation only because I nodded and said yes and no to make it appear that I was listening. When you have ADHD, you become an expert at faking attention.) When are those grades due again? Where did I put the keys? Where did I put the keys?

 

Then there is the hyperactivity aspect. I can do everything! I’ll volunteer to do this or that, because I always want to be busy. I will have these amazing, wonderful ideas and start planning something, then be overwhelmed by the amount of detail, effort and organization involved. This leads to procrastination due to the overwhelming workload I’ve created for myself. Then things either get done in a sloppy way or don’t get done at all because people with ADHD take on too many tasks due to our constant need for mental stimulation.

 

And so here is the equation as I see it: an inability to focus + a need to be active= ANXIETY. That is my epiphany in the early morning hours of dreamlessness.

 

Proof positive: in the time that I started writing this piece, I started making oatmeal for breakfast and got focused on writing, forgetting about the oatmeal cooking on the stove. Yummy, burnt oatmeal for breakfast. Just another day in the life of a person with ADHD.

 

Did I mention I ran out of my ADHD meds? It’s going to be a great day of chaos- I hope I can find my classroom.

~ Ocean

Image

“Thoughtful Young Woman Sitting on Red Sofa” by Ambro  www.freedigitalphotos.net

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff

Don't sweat the small stuffI learned an important lesson from my step father.  When He first entered my life at age 12 he seemed a burly rigid man.  He was tall and broad across the shoulders, physically strong; he was a navy man.  He served for over 20 years on submarines as a sonar technician.  He was at times, an asshole, but I appreciated his efforts in keeping me on the straight and narrow and providing guidance to me when my parents were more consumed by themselves than how I was doing.  They had just separated; my father moved in with my now step mother and my mother began dating my now stepfather.  He showed up on a motorcycle with these ridiculous goggles on his face.  I later would learn he was a huge dork.  A Star Trek lover and fan of ABBA I wondered what this man could possibly bring to my life.  In addition to our mutual love of Star Trek, he had a sense of humor as well.  So we bonded.

I was an awkward teenager morphing into an awkward adult and stressing over something stupid.  Probably a shirt or my hair or some adolescent girl shit.  My step father says, “Hey, don’t sweat the small stuff.”  He later would offer solutions to whatever I was complaining about and rectified it quickly and efficiently.  He would do this many times over the course of our relationship.  Over time I learned he was right and this phrase would become a daily mantra to me in my adult life. 

So many times I have caught myself stressing over some minor detail and thought, “Hey, don’t sweat the small stuff.”  There are bigger things in life to stress about. 

I carry this through my personal life as kind of a philosophy.   There are things worth fighting over and things that aren’t.  I’m not gonna berate my partner for leaving her dishes in the living room or socks on the floor.  Who cares?  It doesn’t really matter in the long run.  

The things that are important to me are things like loyalty, honesty, kindness and love.  I try to focus on those things and try to keep things in the big picture.   Sure, my dog sometimes craps on the floor.  I could yell at her which would upset her and me OR I can remember that overall, she has given me 6 years of unconditional love and laughter so a little shit doesn’t matter.  Shit happens.  Which is another one of my personal philosophies/mantras.

Morpheus what if I told you

The next time you are about to have a freak out over something, ask yourself this?

How will I feel after I work myself up with anger?

What kind of reactions and/or emotions will this provoke in those around me?
Does it really fucking matter?
Ask yourself this

Don’t sweat the small stuff. Shit happens.

Shit happens

Live Humbly, Be Charitable, Live Graciously,

Sam
Images
Shit happens to make room meme https://pics.onsizzle.com/shit-happens-to-make-room-for-a-shift-to-happen-5839415.png

What if I told you meme https://i.imgflip.com/pr0do.jpg

Ask yourself this question https://i.pinimg.com/736x/cd/ed/40/cded40983f805281cbe63e306aceb3b4–good-advice-good-ideas.jpg

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff https://pics.me.me/dont-sweat-the-small-stuff-lum-skye-21183656.png www.pickle bums.com #Skye

These Days

I am having a bad day.  I’ve been dealing with physical pain the last few days.  This always happens with a season change.  It starts with the sleepless nights.  The tossing and the turning.  Sleepless because my legs and feet ache.  A cold throbbing ache through to my bone that refuses to subside no matter how I position myself.  Next it’s the neck pain.  I am writing this currently with a hot magic bag wrapped around my neck.  Then the spine pain.  I’m eating Tylenols like Pez while propped up by pillows and have broken out the space heater.  In the meantime, I wanted to post at least twice a week to the Blog Broad but it’s difficult to be witty when you’re in pain.  All I want to do is ensconce myself in fleece and watch things that make me cry.  I like to hide that part of myself; the sick part of myself.  I prefer to retreat like a wounded animal far away from people.   I feel like I have nothing of importance to say or pass on on days like this.  It takes a big toll on my confidence.  I spend these days in a state of anxiety and nothing I write is ever good enough. 

On “these days” I am going to post “Guest Pieces”.  By a good friend of mine. I am urging her to start her own blog because she is a fabulous writer and I really enjoy her style. Last year she wrote a book and is in the process of finding a publisher. I read her book. Not only was it full of humor and things I could relate to, I couldn’t put it down and finished it in a couple of days. I really hope she finds a way to get it out there for other people to enjoy. She is a teacher by career, so her life is incredibly busy. Until she starts her own blog up she’s going to occasionally send me pieces and I will share them here.  

Stay tuned for guest posts by Ocean Hayward …