Blurring Toward Clarity

Resemble cheerful
Respect expression
Compliment temper
Neglect sentiment
Distrust praise

– today’s #spamadvice

I was supposed to have my cataract lasered out last week, which went remarkably well (considering I dread any procedure that involves my eyes) right up to the point where the laser broke down during my surgery prep.

Supposedly that had never happened before.

Everyone was amazed that I took the breakdown in stride and seemed gosh, cheerful, about having to reschedule.  I should clarify that by ‘everyone,’ I mean my ophthalmologist and the folks at the surgical center, not @bhoneydew.  He’s had a front-row seat for decades to how I break things just by being around them, especially when I’m a shade anxious.  It could be fair to say that I’m relieved once they do break because the next steps suddenly become obvious.

It could be fair to say that, but I’m not.

The rescheduled operation went well, minus a minor glitch during the imaging process (which did point out that my eyeball wasn’t numb enough, so we were able to correct that before the surgery). I’m recovering both faster than I probably should and slower than I definitely want, which is to say, yes, I suck at resting, but at least I’m acknowledging that I need to be nice to myself.

 

 

 

Acedia Domesticus

We must believe
The hours of this situation
Present education
In cultivating celebration
Through graceful service
Of fortunate appetite
And felicitous occasion

-5.25.2018, the latest #spampoetry

It’s almost the middle of the year, and we’re coming up on six years in Northern Virginia, which is now tied with California for the longest @bhoneydew and I have ever lived anywhere together. It has been the longest we’ve ever been at the same address:  we moved twice when we were in California, three times if you count the month we spent in San Diego before we moved north.

Does this house finally seem like home?  No.  Most days, it feels like we haven’t finished unpacking. Even though we got rid of moving boxes right away (having the basement flooded by Sandy did help with that), we still have pictures and artwork stashed in a closet wrapped in the same bubble wrap I taped around it when we left New Jersey.  Yes, that was two moves ago.  Yes, the stuff hasn’t left that closet since we rescued it from flood waters then returned it right back to the basement after it was torn up, dried, scrubbed, repaired and I spent three months yelling at our escrow company so they would just give us the freaking money our insurance company had already said we could have to pay our contractors.

The argument has been that we’ll put the stuff on the walls when the painting’s done. Is the painting done?  No.  Some of it is done, though, and has been for a while, but eh, busy, no time to fool with it, there’s work and school and stuff and even scrubbing toilets is more entertaining than going through the trouble of moving everything and doing the rest of the painting ourselves and being vaguely unhappy with the results and then having a real estate agent’s eventually telling us we do have to get it all redone by professionals because we aren’t experts at it not even close … or even giving up and hiring professionals because that means we’ll still have to move everything and have to live around having people in our house doing the stuff and it might take months, just look at the patio that was supposed to take three weeks and took a year and we still need to get the last sign offs on it!

Et cetera.

But, I did get the tile floor fixed in the Monster’s bathroom.  That took two days, or six years, depending on how you look at it.1 I got the roof dealt with immediately after the late winter storms took shingles off it.  That took a day. This year, I found someone to mow the yard right away, instead of waiting until the local wildlife showed up on the front porch and suggested we seek help, or at least try to get named a nature preserve.2  I also picked up a new couch and chair for the living room, instead of just circling around “I don’t want to do that, because it’ll get damaged in the next move:  let’s just keep the beat up stuff we already have”. That took a week, and I felt really good about myself afterwards.

Not as good as I felt after wrapping up my spring semester of classes, sure, but pretty good, yep!

So I guess there’s hope, if you can call it that.

Or we’ll just convince ourselves that this house really is cursed and move even though we don’t have a sane reason to do so, and we genuinely do have too much going on right now to want to invite that flavor of chaos back into our lives.


1This house was a new construction spec, which the builder decided to interpret as “hey, you bought it after it was built, so we’re going to ignore your punch list, and forget all about doing those three and six month inspections we promised, and decide that you waived your right to a year one inspection because you brought in outside contractors to tear out your basement finishing and do mold remediation after it flooded even though we didn’t intend to offer you or any other resident of this subdivision help in dealing with that.”
2Am I even trying to do any gardening this year?  The sack of bulbs that have been parked by the door for a month suggest I’m still thinking about it, but we’ll see.

One Answer for The Quiet

My brother-in-law passed away on Easter Sunday.  In his case, it’s more appropriate to acknowledge that he died on April 1st; when @bhoneydew and I heard the news, we first thought it was a bad joke.

In truth, we’re not sure it wasn’t.

He was 33. He’d moved out of our basement (where he’d been living off and on for the past three years as he bounced between jobs) three weeks prior. He had been at a new job, one that he liked very much, for only a week. He got up to go into his parents’ kitchen, collapsed, and could not get up.  He died in the ambulance on the way to the hospital.

The family has more questions than will probably ever be answered, but that is expected, even if this wasn’t.

Abidness

Put this in shell.
In case you want to feel healthier,
We are your reliable assistant.

-latest #spamadvice

Abidness?  Abidnescence?  Yes, I know neither of them are real words, but I couldn’t find a good one to describe “situation normal modulo armadillo tendencies”.

The medical adventures continue, but there’s nothing dire to report.  My ear continues to ring, and we’re looking at possible causes (my MRI was textbook ordinary, which disturbed me a little).  I discovered that having an ear worm distracts me from the ringing, so I’ve been trying to listen to a lot of catchy music in order to induce one.

I have also discovered that ear worms are less likely to happen when I am trying to induce one.1 Hey, at least the ringing doesn’t wake me up at night.

Otherwise, there is a staggering amount of nothing to say these days. It’s all positive nothing, though, so there are no complaints contained in the current armadillo space. Stuff abides, y’all.


1I suspect there’s a journal article in that, but I’m not motivated to go learn everything I need to know about quantum biomechanics in order to pretend I know what I’m talking about.

Reading the Signs

You are not right.
Let’s discuss.

-latest #spamconcern

The anonymous bot script is correct: I am not right. My left ear has been ringing since the beginning of the school year. It’s not always at the same volume or frequency: at its best, it feels like I’m wearing half of a headset that’s tuned to a white noise station, and at its worst, it’s waves of cicada-song, which would be soothing if it didn’t sound like someone had digitized the sample badly.

I did a hearing test last week. The results pointed to nerve damage (everything’s structurally sound, and my right ear’s in great shape), and I’ve been set up with a MRI for the coming week to see if we can determine where the damage is located within the ear and get a better idea of what can be done about this, if anything.

Yes, I am spinning some, but just some. There’s too much else to do to get wound up over something I can’t do anything about (at least not yet).

The writing accountability experiment is in full swing. The workout accountability experiment continues. The first class of the winter session has started. And there’s work, which generally does let me sleep more these days.  Generally.

 

Preoccupation and Progress

Having all of the alternatives
And a sense of joyful preoccupation,
This coming year will be
A mischief-maker of strategies
To salvage you to improved discern.

-12.29.2017, #SpamFortuneCookie, which doesn’t sound good, and probably isn’t.

Happy Almost New Year. I settled on FocusWriter. It only took me a week of evaluating the pros and cons. This is progress.

Continue reading

Reflex Action

Suppose that each time you succeed,
you quit all feelings that resemble interest,
walk away with little to show for your joy
and distrust of that remainder.

-12.22.2017, the latest #spampoetry.

Why, yes, I did spend the better part of my non-working day evaluating WriteMonkey, FocusWriter and the latest iteration of Scrivener versus not investing/re-investing in any of them and sticking with random scrawled notes on Post-Its translated into WordPad (though, these days, it’ll more likely be Notepad++ with word wrap turned on), then crammed into Microsoft Word.1

I came to no conclusion beyond that I shouldn’t have bought ice cream yesterday, because there is now ice cream in my house, which means I can stop this spinning and have some ice cream.

Though, it is nearly 11:30, and I have a workout scheduled tomorrow…

Yeah, I’ll skip the ice cream in favor of drinking a glass of water and going to bed.


1I signed up for some creative accountability in the New Year. Or accounting of my creativity, that is, stuff WithMyOwnNameOnItAndCrapWasThisAGoodIdea?