Monday, March 13, 2017

Day 14

On March 30, B turns 43.  Forty-three sounds really old to me, especially because when we started dating he was only 27.  At the time, THAT seemed old too, as I was only 24.  Now 27 and 24 sound like babies, 43 and almost-40 sound old as fuck, and I feel like we're stuck somewhere in between our prime and dead, which, I guess, we kinda are.  Because of this, and because 43 is a a really boring number and doesn't seem like an age where anything special would happen, I decided to give the Universe a big ole "fuck you" and MAKE this birthday special for B, which means I decided he wouldn't just have a birth DAY, but a whole goddamn BIRTH MONTH.  Every day I've had a plan, every day I've done a little something to celebrate B-- some days he would find a card made by one of the kids, or an old photo with a written memory attached, or a package of his favorite candy, or a single bottle of beer in a brand he hadn't tried before.  Little, Happy Things.  Tomorrow, Tuesday, March 14, is Day 14 of B's Spectacular Birthday Month, and so I'm writing this for his Day 14 Little, Happy Thing.

B, you complain that I don't blog anymore, don't write enough.  So this one, babydoll, is for you.  Happy Day 14 of your Birthday.

An hour ago, I started writing this blog in honor of my B.  It was a list of all the things that stand out in my head, for which I am grateful to him.  Turns out, that didn't go well, as I am emotionally unstable and prone to crying fits whenever I meander down Memory Lane, particularly on extremely overcast and freezing March days.  Which led to Bellamy getting off the bus and coming through the front door to find me sobbing at the computer, with both dogs in my lap, mascara streaming down my face, and wearing fleece pajamas I got for Christmas, with herbal tea (Lemon Ginger, in case you're wondering) spilled down the front because I was crying too hard to hold the cup steady enough to drink.  Welcome to Pathetic, y'all.  Time to regroup.

Because a teary, tea-stained blog is NOT a Little, Happy thing, I started trying to think of something to write about, and started thinking of all the Little, Happy Things that B does for me.  Not the big, life-altering HOLD ME UP AND KEEP ME BREATHING WHEN I'M GOING THROUGH HELL kinds of things that I WAS writing about (God knows he's done plenty of those), but the sweet, tiny things that would easily go unnoticed, unremarked upon, unappreciated.  And there are so many.  On weekend mornings when we get up, B makes me a cup of coffee first thing--before he even makes his own--and gets the almond-milk/creamer ratio so perfect that it's way better than when I make it.  HE'S A COFFEE GENIUS.  He turns my side of the bed down at night for me and spreads an extra blanket over it because he knows that I get cold more easily than he does when I sleep.  He makes all the phone calls I don't want to make to doctors and insurance companies and freakin' Medtronic (I HATE calling Medtronic-- you have to go through the automated system for ten minutes before FINALLY getting a person who then repeatedly puts you on hold or transfers you to someone else who repeatedly puts you on hold and NOTHING EVER GETS SOLVED but somehow when HE calls them he magically gets things done).  He returns things to stores that don't fit or that I decide I don't like, because I hate returning things.  When our cable bundle changed and we suddenly no longer had HBO and I freaked out because GAME OF THRONES STARTS BACK IN JULY he immediately stopped what he was doing, called Comcast, and got me HBO even though he doesn't watch Game of Thrones and gives zero fucks about television in general,  He surprise mops for me when he knows that I need to mop but haven't had time.  He goes to ALL the boring kid shit (meetings about field trips and registration and such) that I just DON'T WANT TO GO TO while encouraging me to stay home and have a glass of wine and watch Bravo.  He randomly scrubs the shower when it needs it (another chore I hate), offers regularly to grocery shop (although I rarely take him up on it), cheers me on when I'm sad, encourages me to buy things that I KNOW he thinks are ridiculous but that I think are awesome (usually something alpaca themed), and DOES ALL THIS HAPPILY AND KINDLY AND WITHOUT EVER ASKING FOR ANYTHING IN RETURN.  Basically?  He's amazing.  And he loves me.  A lot.

I realize that I'm a very lucky girl.  Thank you, B, for it all.  You do so much, and I'm so, so grateful.  Happy Day 14 of your Birthday, my love.  May it be the best day of your Birthday Month so far.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

(Not) Making Memories

Last August, I woke up one morning and thought, "Huh.  I think there is something I have to do today."  After lying in bed for a few minutes and thinking really hard, I realized that OH, YEAH, TODAY IS THE FIRST DAY OF FALL SEMESTER.  I HAVE TO GO TEACH CLASS.

Clearly, I'm crushing life.

About a year and a half ago, I started getting really worried that I might be losing my mind.  My whole life, I've been incredibly OCD.  I am never late, and I don't forget appointments EVER, or specific dates of any kind.  I can still tell you the birth date of every ex-boyfriend I have ever dated, as well as the exact date of when we started dating and broke up (and, probably, what I was wearing).  I know all my pets' birthdays (both living and deceased) for God's sake.  I KNOW B'S EX-GIRLFRIENDS' BIRTHDAYS, YOU GUYS. (Note:  This is due to me asking back before we even began dating and were just friends because I like to know people's astrological signs.  It's always entertaining to imagine him, an Aries, trying to make it work with a Taurus. Hell, my bff is a Taurus and they've nearly killed each other a dozen times just trying to be friends.  A romantic relationship would be like World War III, on crack.)  It's not a numbers thing--I'm terrible with numbers (I still don't know my home phone number and we've had it for a year and a half, during which I've only had to write it down or recite it to someone about a billion times)--but it's more like I have a day planner in my head that I can visualize and see the things I need to remember.  And if somebody ever tells me a date (or I see it written down somewhere) I won't forget it.  Dates just stick.

Except all of a sudden, they don't anymore.  And neither does anything else.

Well, that's kind of a lie.  I can remember SOME things.  I just can't remember EVERYTHING, ALL THE TIME, like I used to, and I don't seem to have any control over what I DO remember.  Completely irrelevant date of the last time I had the dog groomed?  July 25th.  Got it.  Important school meeting at the elementary school?  I have no idea.  (Turns out, as B reminded me, it's TONIGHT.)  I don't forget things like that.  I DON'T.  So why am I now?  And while it's not just dates (I lose my train of thought all the time, I don't remember if I've already told B or the kids something or not when sometimes it was only five minutes ago that I told them), there are also lots of things I still DON'T forget.  I never misplace my keys, or forget where my car is parked.  I can tell you the final grade of every student I have taught the past two semesters.  But......B came in with an envelope from the mailbox one day addressed to "484," laughing, and commented that "they almost got it right."  I thought about it for a minute and said, "What are you talking about?"  B was like, "Um, we're 448."  Oh.  Yeah.  Right.  We are.  Should I have noticed that?

Back to losing my mind.

So when this started, I thought I was probably getting early-onset Alzheimer's Disease at the ripe old age of 38.  My grandma actually died of Alzheimer's, but it wasn't early onset.  I saw one doctor who blamed my Celiac disease (it is very true that you get a horrible Brain Fog if you have Celiac when you get "glutened"--but it only lasts a couple of days, thank goodness), and another couple of doctors I was seeing for other things said it was almost certainly stress and anxiety (and that I was making myself crazy with my Alzheimer's paranoia-- THANK YOU, CAPTAIN OBVIOUS).  A couple of friends my age say they are having the same issues, and one of them suggested that she thinks it's hormonal.  B is on the stress bandwagon and says that I'm always too distracted to notice anything to remember it.  Nobody thinks I'm getting Alzheimer's.  (I'm surrounded by optimists!  Or maybe I'm a hypochondriac.)  Whatever the cause, I wish I could make it stop.  

One theory I have, other than Alzheimer's, is that my brain just got too full of random, useless tidbits and now refuses to hold any non-urgent information.  I mean, I've read about a hundred zillion books in my life, to the point that they now all run together and I can't tell you what happened from one to the next . The second I finish the last page, I forget pretty much the entire thing.  Last time I went to the library, I literally checked out two books that I had already read and didn't realize it until a few days later when I was halfway through one of them and thinking, "This is so familiar!"  Then I realized I had read it about two years ago, put it away, picked up the other and realized I had read it too (only this time I figured it out on the first page).

And so I've been paying attention to my crazy, trying to suss out what's causing it.  Turns out, B is right, I think.  I don't pay attention to ANYTHING that happens.  I'm ALWAYS thinking about something else.  I'm completely lost in my head.  Even when I'm "being mindful," I'm not being mindful because I'm too busy freaking out inside that I'm not actually being mindful (or about something else--I'm almost constantly freaking out inside).  Problem is, I don't know if this is happening to other people, I don't know what the root of the trouble is, and I don't know how to make it stop.

SO, I'm going to (attempt) to start blogging more, because that seems to help.  I'm going to (attempt) to keep meditating, although I think it's ridiculously stupid and a waste of my time because my concentration is nil.  And if nothing else works and B locks my ass up in assisted-living for memory care, stop by and visit.  It'll be good to make a new friend....every time you visit.