Monday, November 30, 2009

Thank God For My Girl... And The Caffeine

I had an amazing visit with my girlfriend this weekend. It was fantastic to see her and we had a great time. She's the only person who has ever really understood me and been okay with my limitations and challenges. We spent a lot of time curled up on the couch, watching movies, because I'm so tired. We did take my dog to the park one day, which totally flattened me for that day and the next, but she was very helpful and loving and understanding about my lack of energy. This is especially impressive because of the fact that she's high energy by anyone's standards.

On Sunday we went to the nearest bookstore. I sat down in the cafe with my caffeine fix and read dog magazines while she ran around looking at books. She came back every so often to check up on me, and it kept us both entertained without draining me. I think once she moves here (a torturous six months from now) we'll do that more often.

Of course she had to go home though, and it hit me pretty hard. As soon as she left this morning I hit the couch and turned on the tv to keep my mind off of it. I already miss her a lot. I probably would have just spent all day pining if I hadn't figured out I was feeling depressed. Instead caffeine saved me again and I'm feeling much better. Talking to her when she gets home will also help. I'm shocked and amazed when I think about how lucky I am to have someone who cares so much.

Not to mention she's a really good cook. I got leftovers for lunch. :D

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

School and Dogs

I survived another day of class and driving, and went ahead and filled out the form to withdraw from the school. My photography instructor, who is also my head of department (or Head of House, as I like to think of it, haha) knows I'm leaving because of my health and he brought me the form and explained that he'll turn it in and I don't really have to do anything else. I really really appreciated it, because now it's taken care of and when my class ends I'm done. He said he's sorry to see me go, and I am too. I've really had fun with this animation stuff, and I still think it would be the career for me if I could hold down a job.

I decided today that I will try to go back in the fall. I'm moving out of my parents' house and into an apartment with my girlfriend this summer, and so that gives me three quarters to recover and move and possibly feel better. If fall comes around again and I'm still too tired to do much I won't start again, but if I feel up to it I would like to. It's been really fun, as much as I've complained occasionally. XD

In other news, my girlfriend fell in love with a dog. I had a lot of worries at first which we've gone through and discussed, but let's face it, one look at pictures of this dog's face and I was sold. XD Seriously though, we had agreed on adding a second dog to our family of two humans, two ridiculously adorable cats and a fluffy dachshund, we just weren't originally thinking of adding the second dog for a couple of years. We all know how that goes, though, lol. We're both suckers and animal people, so it really was inevitable. I'm excited. He does sound perfect, and I figure, if I managed to train my dog I'm really not worried about a more mild-mannered one. So life is good, and my girlfriend is coming to visit tomorrow, so my guess is that it'll be next week before I post again. YAY.

Middle School Stress Out

Most of my dream was about middle school. It was actually some sort of weird combination of my actual middle school experience and the art college I'm about to stop attending. I had five normal subjects, plus a homeroom class that was apparently a fashion class that was preparing us to be models (probably because I was watching America's Next Top Model the other day). I was sitting in my various classes, trying to figure out how many classes I could drop because I was really overwhelmed, but the year was really close to over so it was hard to decide- I didn't want to take algebra again later, and in English there was just one project left and I thought it was going to be fun- an essay about your imaginary friends and a self portrait (hahaha). Basically I had way too much to do but there was no good way to slow down. I hated homeroom because it was really hard for me- I had to conjure various weird fashion clothing out of thin air and onto myself, plus find makeup and glitter and jewelry that matched to have on my face, and all in front of the class. I thought my costume that day wasn't too bad, but I wasn't very happy with it and thought the class was pretty pointless. Oh yeah, and it was full of people from my art college, haha. I was pretty sad thinking about leaving and not getting to see them anymore, which obviously has a basis in real life.

After struggling to find a way to drop things while also trying to concentrate in math and English, it was finally lunchtime. I grabbed my stuff and followed one of my real middle school friends into the bathroom. I was tired and hungry and really wanted lunch, so of course everything started to go wrong. First, this guy from my elementary school ran into my friend and knocked her over while we were putting all of our stuff down on the floor (we each had about five different bags, and one of mine was a koala backpack for some reason o.O). My friend started crying and I ran over and hugged her, and it took her awhile to calm down. Meanwhile, the entire bathroom got really busy, and then there kept being things wrong with the toilets (as always happens to me when I dream about bathrooms). It took us what seemed like forever to get to our usual lunch spot, which was apparently in the school's carpeted ballroom (because that makes sense). Our other friends were there- high school friends this time- and it turned out to be after school and we were waiting for calls from our parents. I pulled all of my homework out, still trying to figure out how I was going to survive until the end of the semester. Another one of my friends was really grumpy because she'd gotten a B on something, which is funny because it's so her, and the friend who had gotten knocked down was just really quiet and unhappy. Pretty soon I realized I should start packing up to take all of my stuff home, still no closer to figuring out what I was going to do about having too many classes.

I started shoving things into my massive backpack, and as I did more things would form on the floor, so that there was always one more pencil, or folder, or sheet of paper to stow away. After awhile the items got sillier- tiny stubby pencils, or a fistful of rubberbands, or marti gras necklaces in Christmas colors. I woke up while I was still packing.

I feel like there was another dream in the middle of all of that in which my girlfriend and her new dog were at my grandparents' house, trying to introduce him to my dog, only I drifted off and had a dream about a house in a puzzle I'm working on. But I don't remember anything else about that.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Good Decisions

Well, my latest attempt to raise my Xyrem dose has (not surprisingly) backfired. I only raised it one little increment on one of the three doses, and it did help me sleep for about a week. But then I got my usual side effects back- anxiety and lack of appetite- and had to lower it again. It's made me uptight and tense, so it was a relief to wake up this morning feeling a little bit back to normal. I'm pretty cheerful today.

I'm so glad that I went ahead and dropped two of my classes. I've had a chance to rest and after a couple of weeks of falling behind I'm actually ahead in my one remaining class. I'm also no longer finding it hard to keep things clean, I have the energy to make myself food again and I haven't missed a single walk with my dog. Since regaining the energy to take care of my daily life was the point of dropping classes, I think it's been worth it.

At the same time, as I get ready to leave the school, I've been a little sad about it. I've had a good time there and learned a lot of very useful information. Part of me does want to finish this degree, but I know it doesn't make sense practically. Last March, I was taking four intense classes- two of them with the hardest drawing instructor in the school- and easily taking the stairs up to the fifth floor almost every day. Yesterday I went to school to sort through some photos and print some things out. I was there for maybe two hours- more like one and a half- and I needed a nap by the end. One of the elevators was broken, so it was a long wait for the other one. I took the stairs up to the fifth floor for the first time in months. It took all that I had- I leaned heavily on the handrail and went very slowly. It really impressed on me how much worse I've gotten, and I have no way of knowing when I'm going to get feeling better. That's why I need to leave the school, because I just don't have the energy anymore.

I wish I could say for sure that I'll be coming back. But the reality is that it could be years before I'm really able to, and by then life might have taken me somewhere else. Or it could be just one quarter that I'm gone, who knows. We'll just have to see.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Anger Management

I don't look particularly threatening. I mean, I'm a short and skinny person who looks about 14 despite being about ten years older, who has a fondness for animated movies and likes to belt out Backstreet Boys lyrics while driving along in her car. I have a nice collection of stuffed animals for God's sake, and the silliest looking little dog ever. I've been described as cute in multiple languages, and adorable, and people I don't know are constantly asking me what grade I'm in.

So you would think I would be more or less harmless, but that just means you haven't seen me when I get angry.

It doesn't happen very often. Most of the time I take things in stride, or else get upset rather than angry. The result of this, though, is that it slowly builds up, so that when I do explode I don't see it coming. It seriously seems to me, after the fact, that it comes up suddenly out of nowhere and the anger just takes over. I start shouting and throwing things, and storming around and kicking the furniture. It's a little frightening for me because I'm used to being in control of myself, avoiding any and all conflict by just not saying anything, but then I turn into this total monster for a good five minutes every couple of months.

Most of the time it doesn't effect anyone else. I keep it hidden, try to contain it, to get out later when I'm alone and can throw my sandals at the dresser or rip pieces of paper into tiny shreds. But two days ago I was talking to my girlfriend on the phone when it happened, and I lost control of myself again. I think it flared up around her because we're so close, and I feel safe around her almost like I'm alone, if that makes sense. I'm very, very lucky that she didn't dump me then and there. There is no excuse for my behavior. Plenty of reasons, but none of them justify the hurt I inflicted with my outburst. Part of it was definitely related to frustration with my parents at the moment. Part of it was probably being hungry, or exhausted, or the fact that my dad came home early without warning that day, interrupting my peace and quiet. It had to do with my girlfriend recounting her bad day, and me being upset that her day was bad too. But whatever the reasons for it, it was wrong and I hurt the person I love the most.

I've always made excuses for it, because I do have a lot of good reasons to be angry, not the least of which is having a misunderstood medical condition that makes me look like an idiot a lot of the time. I've had shouting matches with my parents before that hurt everyone involved, so it isn't a new issue. But now is the time to find a better outlet, or at least gain enough control over my emotions to not hurt someone else. For one thing, I'm planning on figuring out how to spot the buildup before the explosion- that way I give myself time to get away from anyone else before I let it all out. I also need to find a way to let it out more frequently in smaller amounts, because I think that would make my life better anyway- tucking it all away can't be good for me. I'm glad, to a certain extent, that something happened to bring the whole thing into perspective, even though it sucked. Now at least I can work on it.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Lunchbox Cult

I had a pretty disturbing dream last night. It was basically about me joining a cult. I don't really remember how it started; I think it was my girlfriend who took me to this meeting in a high school classroom where this really charismatic cult leader guy was trying to recruit people. We were really late, so I didn't get most of what they were talking about, but I figured it was probably all fake anyway. We ended up staying after a few minutes to talk to the leader guy, who I thought at the time was pretty sketchy. It was a little bit weird.

We went home and I was talking to my girlfriend on the phone (apparently we lived in seperate places) when I got a call from the cult leader, inviting me to a meeting at the high school late that night. This time I went without my girlfriend.

We were all sitting in a classroom, crammed into high school desks, with the leader writing diagrams on the blackboard. At first I thought the whole thing was pretty weird, but then we all got these gift bags with really random stuff in them that apparently had to do with the cult, like robes we were supposed to wear and a complicated set of lunchboxes with compartments for everything. I thought this was really cool, apparently, and decided to at least give the cult a chance (you know me, easily swayed by... fancy lunchboxes? XD).

Then he went on to talk about the various beliefs the cult had, including this method of talking to spirits and ghosts, which it turned out I was really good at. The information all seemed to be disjointed and not make any sense, but somehow I understood it and I was thoroughly convinced. By the end of the meeting I was feeling really weird- really happy, but kind of drugged, and I couldn't for the life of me remember if he had given us anything to eat or drink. I was having trouble understanding a survey one of the higher up people was trying to give me about the meeting. I paid seven dollars to join the cult, in cash, in the form of a $4 bill, a $2 bill and a $1 bill. Then I woke up, vaguely disturbed. o.O

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Interesting Stairs House

Last night I had a dream about an interesting house, and it was funny because it relates completely to stuff I've been thinking about.

It started out that I was at this tiny theater to watch a musical that one of my close friends (who I needed to email in real life) was directing. I sat down and it started, with a couple of characters emerging suddenly from behind a tree that had at first looked like it was painted onto the background. I thought this was really clever, but then the play turned out to be pretty bad, and most of the audience left. I ended up talking to my friend instead and telling her everything I had planned to email her about.

Then the dream changed and I was walking around this massive house with my dad. He was helping me apartment hunt so I could have some good options to show my girlfriend when she came to visit. The place had a lot of stairs, which I had reservations about, but it was pretty cool all the same. You entered the front doors, which were massive, dark carved wooden double doors, and there was a small entry room with a closet and a flight of stairs going up, with a beautiful carved wooden banister and aged but gleaming wooden steps. Up those stairs was a small sitting room, like a miniature living room, with more stairs going up. On the next landing there were two hallways going left and right. One hallway had the master bedroom and no less than four other bedrooms, obviously intended for kids by the paint colors, all off the hallway and right next to each other, sharing one bathroom. I thought at the time that this setup was pretty weird, with the parents and kids right on top of each other. This floor was carpeted in a soft blue-green carpet.

Down the other hallway was a tiny office space and a closed door. When I opened this door, I found myself looking into a massively gigantic room. It was carpeted like the bedrooms and looked identical, except that it was multiple thousand square feet by itself. The ceiling was pretty standard height but the room continued on so far that it was difficult to make out the opposite wall. I remember wondering what on earth you would use a room that big for.

Back on the landing, I went up another flight of stairs to find a couple more office-like spaces, with wood floors this time. Up more stairs took me to the top floor of the house. It was massive. There was a huge kitchen behind metal doors, looking like it belonged in a restaurant with steel countertops and huge amounts of workspace, plus a big walk-in freezer. Next to the kitchen was a small area with a few tables next to the stairs. Through another door was a massive room like the interior of a restaurant, with tons of tables set with napkins, silverware, candles and even menus. Beyond that I could see an empty area like a ballroom. The carpet up here was a rich shade of red and the whole place looked pretty classy.

I followed my dad back down to the front door, exhausted from climbing the stairs and seriously wondering why I was considering this house. I really liked it and thought it was cool, though I was trying to figure out what on earth we were going to use the restaurant and random huge room for. Plus I knew I didn't want a kitchen upstairs from my bedroom like in my parents' house. I resolved to discuss it with my girlfriend and then suddenly woke up, really amused.

I'm already feeling physically better and I only just dropped classes yesterday, so I'm sure now that I did the right thing. Plus my parents have agreed, more or less, to give me space on the health stuff. We'll see how long that lasts.

Friday, November 13, 2009


Today I went up to my school and dropped two of my three classes. I was stressed out all morning, dreading it. It was pretty quick and easy, but I still feel really guilty about it for some reason.

It's not that I think I'm not doing the right thing. I already feel a lot less stressed out knowing that I just have one class to keep up with now. It really was too much and there's no doubt about that. It's just hard for me to let go sometimes, especially when I'm doing well in a class despite everything. Plus I'm a little worried I'm going to get crap for it or something, which is silly because I do have the best reasons ever.

I still have to sort out not coming back next quarter, but fortunately it turns out I can do it any time between now and the end of the quarter. That gives me a little bit more time to recover before I tackle the next hurdle.

I have been talking to my parents about it, and they reacted more or less exactly how I predicted, with my mom freaking out and resistant at first, but then getting it after a lot of explanation, and my dad taking it in stride. My parental drama now has to do with how worried they are about the state of my health.

It's not surprising. I mean, they really care about me and sincerely want me to feel better, and I do appreciate that- a lot. But it can be stifling- they want to direct everything, and get more involved than I really want them to be. Part of it probably comes from living with them still. Right now I'm just trying to get myself a little bit of space, and do some recovering before I go back to my neurologist. My parents wanted me to make an appointment as soon as possible, but I think that's rushing things. I want to see what effect, if any, not having classes to get to and get through and stress out about has on my health first. I really think I'll get feeling better in the next couple of weeks without doctor intervention. Also, I need my slightly raised Xyrem dose to settle out so I can tell if it helps or my side effects come back. Basically they want to rush over there and start interrogating my doctor about how we're going to fix me, and I just want to coast along and see how I feel. I think my parents still have this idea of a healthy me that may never actually happen. I have Narcolepsy, and I know that I may always have this interfering with my life. I'm okay with that at this point- I'm beginning to accept the idea of making the most of the situation instead of trying to live as if I don't have a chronic condition. I think my parents aren't quite there yet.

I'm really really grateful for their support and how much they care. But I'm also glad that my girlfriend agrees with me and supports my view of the situation. I might have mentioned that I have the best person in the universe as my girlfriend, so it's thoroughly unfair to compare my parents to her. It does mean that in the future life will most likely involve less freaking out, at least about this stuff, which is something I'm very happy about.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Forest Exploring Ceremony

I had the coolest dream last night. It was set at my grandparents' house- I was there with two of my cousins and we were younger- maybe 13 or 14. The backyard was this vast forest that was dark and dense and generally awesome. It was filled with hundreds of twisty, fantastical trees that looked like they belonged in Disney's Tarzan. It was cool and wet and the forest floor was mostly mud and moss.

I was inside, getting ready for an expedition into the forest. My mission was to hunt for these glowing rocks and when I found one, to leave a token of some kind there. You could see the glow from a certain distance, so it was going to take a lot of walking. The whole thing was some sort of coming of age ceremony, and I had an elaborate costume made out of sticks, leaves and mud. I went into the kitchen (which actually looked like the kitchen at my old house) and was searching around for provisions to take with me. My expedition was going to take me all day and I needed to have enough food. I found a box of gluten-free granola bars in a cabinet and thought that would be perfect. Then I found an instant breakfast sandwich wrapped in foil- the box said it was self-cooking, you just put the foil in the sun and it would be ready to eat. That sounds perfect, I thought. I packed that in my small backpack. Just then, my grandmother called me and my cousins into another room. I don't remember what it was exactly but one of my cousins had done something against the rules. I was exasperated because I was ready to leave and go on my fun adventure and I didn't want such a pointless distraction.

I feel like there were a couple more delays before I actually got out there, but I had just started to explore (now with a couple of other cousins) when I woke up.

Well, at least the extra Xyrem is improving my dreams, even if I'm still not getting enough deep sleep.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Going Domestic

It's finally time to reveal my latest life plan. To be honest, it surprises me a bit. But then again, life is surprising and it likes to change your path in ways you never expected. I suppose that's something I've been learning through my last eight attempts at planning the future, lol.

As you know if you've been reading about my life for some reason, my Narcolepsy has been really kicking my ass lately. For over a year I've been working on an Animation degree at the local art institute, but as my energy level has been plummeting the last couple of months I've been rethinking things. I dropped from four classes to three two quarters ago out of necessity and now I'm struggling to stay afloat with just the three (and they're easier). When I started this degree (my second bachelor's) a year ago, my intention was to use it to get a full time studio job because the field of animation is just such a good fit for me personality-wise. If I were going to work full time, that would be the job for me. And I've really enjoyed my classes, don't get me wrong. It's been a blast and I've learned a ton about a lot of art-related fields, as well as some useful practical skills. But things have changed. I've gone downhill far enough to really put full time work out of reach. For awhile I just assumed I would switch to trying to work part time eventually, but right now that, too, has become unrealistic. So there goes the main reason I was pursuing another degree.

Meanwhile, I'm starting to realize that taking these classes has begun to interfere with taking care of myself. While I'm still enjoying them, I've been really stressed out because I'm barely keeping up with the work. Having a class on a day tends to kill it- by the time I drive over there, try to concentrate for four hours and drive home, that's my entire day's worth of energy gone. I'm finding it difficult to keep things clean around the house or cook something other than a frozen dinner on those days. Most of my class days- three days a week- my dog doesn't get his second walk. And basically I'm tired of skimping on the important dog and health aspects of my life in order to finish an extra degree.

But there is the really good addition to my life right now, namely the fact that I'm dating my best friend in the world, who actually gets all of this stuff. We're planning to move in together over the summer, and her take on the situation was that as she's going to be busy and full-time employed with a steady job that's likely to always be in demand, she can support me financially. I could take care of the animals and the apartment and help her to stay organized (which she desperately needs help with), and run the errands and work on my art, and that will be my full-time job. I think this idea is brilliant because for once I feel like it's something I could actually physically manage, even with Narcolepsy breathing down my neck. It also aligns more closely with my own personal values than any hypothetical careers I've tried to come up with in the past. Taking care of her and our environment and pets sounds wonderful to me. And you know, if I start feeling better I can always add more. If my art becomes something good I could pursue that, maybe even make some money on the side, but I wouldn't be in the predicament of needing to produce it fast enough to support myself. Also, I can be on her health insurance, which solves that looming problem.

I'm anticipating some resistance from the parents on this latest occupation idea, however. I tried to feel my mom out on the idea of not finishing my Animation degree, and she has the opinion that if I'm not in school or working this means I'm going to be bored or unhappy. Now, this makes sense, because that's how she would feel without school or a job, which is why she's worked right through periods of her own bad health. But I think I'll be fine. I'm pretty zen. I can slow down and actually be happier that way.

I think my dad will be resistant just because he really likes making money, has a ton of energy, and has trouble seeing things from other points of view. I had a really good conversation with him last week about how my health is right now, so I'm hopeful he'll understand that aspect of it. But he's always had this image of successful career-woman me in his head that I've been bumping up against my entire life.

What I think is interesting about this situation is that if I had a serious boyfriend instead of a serious girlfriend no one would so much as blink- this is Texas after all. And if it was fifty years ago this novel, out-there idea of being my spouse's housewife would have been a given. But it is here and it is now, and this will be interesting.

Old House Exploration Sleepover

Yesterday I got fed up with not sleeping very well and raised my first dose of Xyrem slightly, hoping that even if my stomach rebelled I would at least get more sleep for a few days. I did sleep better and had a couple really interesting dreams.

It started out that it was dark outside and I decided to take my dog out into the yard to use the bathroom before going to bed. I put his leash on for some reason and opened the door, and found myself in this fanastical Japanese garden. It was really cool- it had a curved wooden plank bridge over this little stream that had big waves in it, and there was a lot of wild-looking plants everywhere. I crossed the bridge and it was suddenly the middle of the afternoon, and I realized I was actually in the backyard of my old house. It was how I remembered it being as a child, before we did any landscaping, and everything was exactly how it was at that time. I ran around exploring it and just really happy to be back there.

Then I went inside the house and was exploring in there, and it kept changing into different dream variations on that house- everything from how it was laid out last week in my dream with the huge computers to some variations on it I hadn't dreamed about in years. I found some really neat stuff in my room, though I don't remember the specifics now. As I walked into the living room I instead found myself in this mall. Apparently my parents had started a mall out of our living room and as business grew they had built on to the front of the house. It was pretty crowded and they were selling some pretty random things. It was a bunch of tables loaded with piles of boxes of stuff for sale, a lot of it candy or little knickknacks. I spotted some stairs and started going up to see what was above.

There turned out to be floors and floors on this building, which had turned into an adobe style thing- all the walls were smooth and brown. Every so often the stairs would end in another room of merchandise, and in one of them was a pile of candy bars that were labeled "gluten" in large letters, which I thought was hilarious at the time. I kept running into food I couldn't eat while I was exploring, but I didn't really mind because I having fun seeing what all was there.

After that dream I had another one in which I started out in a class my best friend was teaching, and I don't remember much about it except that it somehow turned into a sleepover with my high school friends on a boat where I was taking pictures for my photography class with the fancy camera. I was trying to get nice portraits of people but it was like 3 AM and I was really tired.

Overall I think it's an improvement as I'm feeling better rested this morning. It was also nice having a night without frustration or disturbing aspects to my dreams.

Friday, November 6, 2009

A Good Cry

Sometimes you just need a good cry.

Every time I've tried to talk to anyone about my health lately I've ended up in tears before I can even really say anything. I'm in a pretty bad place with Narcolepsy right now. I've been going downhill for months and my neurologist is basically out of ideas, which makes me feel pretty helpless. I'm having more and more trouble doing the work for my increasingly fewer classes and I'm sleeping worse as the nights go on. I feel like I'm fighting an uphill battle and losing ground every day. To say I'm scared would be an understatement.

At the same time my life is changing for the better. I've been able to make plans to move out of my parents house (which I was seriously worried I would still be living in at the age of 35) to start a life with my girlfriend (who we have already established is the best person ever). It's such a wonderful emotional thing, and my health is such a terrible emotional thing that between the two I've felt like I've been on an emotional rollercoaster all day.

I talked to my mom this morning and my dad when he got home from work. Both parents are ecstatic about the plans and worried about the health. I had a heart to heart with my dad on the way home from dinner about how bad my Narcolepsy is getting and how helpless I feel in the face of it. When we got home he gave me the tightest hug in a long time and told me he loves me. I was already crying, but I lost it even more because I'm so damned lucky to have the parents that I have. I headed straight for the shower and cried my eyes out for awhile. I actually let all my feelings about my health come out for once; most of the time I shove the panic down and try to ignore it, to pretend like I can handle this.

My inner therapist is telling me that I need to learn to accept the lack of control. I think that's one of the major things I can learn from this illness... that I need to let things happen sometimes instead of getting caught up in frustration and disappointment when I can't change how I feel. But I'm so not there yet. At least the people around me are the best people in the world, and because of that I know everything will turn out okay.

I Already Forgot My Clever Title For This Entry

I've been having a pretty trippy week. I'm still doing a lot more intense dreaming than usual and it's taking its toll on my energy level.

Yesterday I woke up from a really bloody and gorey dream in which I was this girl in a family that was heavily involved in organized crime. I didn't look anything like me; I had very dark hair and so did the rest of my dream family. A lot of them were these big burly thugs like you see in movies. I forget what the latest crime plot was, but most of the dream took place at this party that was outside in a rural, forested place. It was daylight but overcast and a little spooky. At one point I discovered that there was an undercover FBI agent at the party and decided (for reasons I don't remember) to help him out. I was terrified of my brothers finding out what I was doing. Someone figured out who the agent was and I was helping him escape; we were being chased and I had to lead him through the back of our sprawling, mansion-like house. There was lots of gunfire and blood and the whole thing was pretty disturbing, but he got away and I hid in a bathroom so no one would know I had been involved.

I actually had some energy to start with yesterday, which was good because photographing stuff takes it out of me. I got my first photo idea all set up when my memory card claimed to be out of space, which made no sense because I was careful to delete everything off of it last time I was downloading things. I ended up having to go buy another one.

Leaving the house always lays me out, but there's an office supply place really close to my neighborhood so I figured if I just went there they would have it. Wrong. I drove over there to find that they didn't have anything like what I needed and by the time I got back (all of five minutes later) I was so exhausted I had to lay down.

I figured a nap and some lunch would give me the energy I needed to go to the slightly further away office supply place. Well, by the time I got back from there (and a quick grocery stop because I had discovered when I tried to make lunch that I was almost completely out of food) it was 2 PM and I was pretty much dead in the water.

I was determined to get some homework done, so I took a couple of shots in my room. Then I dragged myself upstairs and spent the rest of the day on the couch or in bed. That's the earliest I've crashed in awhile.

And today I don't feel much better. I was reading Harry Potter again last night and dreamed that I was Harry and had to hide from Voldemort, who could suddenly read my mind, so if I made the mistake of thinking about where I was he would appear and I would have to escape over and over. I ended up some really weird places, like a carnival with giant brightly colored rides, a small log cabin in the woods, a big theater in a high school, etc etc, with various other characters mixed in. At least it wasn't particularly disturbing.

Here's to hoping that today isn't a repeat of yesterday, even though I'm already dragging...

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

The Best Girl in the Entire World

I'm not sure where to start on this one, because there's so much history and depth and communication and plain old sappy love involved. So I think I'll settle for the simple explaination: I found a girl.

We've been best friends since we met five years ago at Carleton. Over the years we've been through a lot together and we've grown very attached to each other. We have never really had secrets from each other- she's always been the one person I could tell everything to. Not even every crazy little detail of the inner workings of my messed up brain have scared her off, which is impressive. We have always shared a very deep bond.

During our senior year at Carleton we realized we were completely in love with each other. The timing was unfortunate and a lot of stress and depression (on both sides) eventually caused it all to crash. Since then our feelings toward each other never went away. We got over ourselves and our close friendship continued after graduation, though we were both afraid of broaching the subject again. Despite living across the country from each other we actually kept up communication so well that our relationship got even stronger over the past year.

A month ago we decided we might as well be officially dating again since we were practically dating already anyway, haha. And since then we've both been so much happier about life. I can't even begin to describe how much I love her and I'll spare you the ridiculous amount of sappiness that could fill about eight entries on here, easily. I'll just say that life is good, my girlfriend is awesome, and leave it at that.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Getting Exercise

Today I had a day pretty much off from class things, having been especially responsible about getting things done last week (or it might have been the caffeine, haha). So when I got up this morning I decided to catch up on some cleaning. When I'm as focused on getting through college (again) as I've had to be lately with my health going downhill, things fall by the wayside around my part of the house. I'm only responsible for my small bedroom and the downstairs bathroom but it still has to get pretty bad before I do anything about it. Now, we are talking about my grew-up-with-a-total-neatfreak version of bad, so I'm sure there are many worse bathrooms out there. But it was seriously starting to bother me. Besides that, dust has been building up in my room again so I figured I would tackle that afterwards.

I figured I'd just do my cleaning in the morning, so after I ate breakfast I got out all the bathroom cleaning stuff to drag back downstairs. Then I got to work. It took me awhile because I had to figure it out- it had been awhile since I'd done more than the vanity and with my terrible memory I had forgotten exactly how to clean everything. By the time I finished the bathroom was gleaming and I was overdue for a nap. I decided to take the dog outside first.

I got out there to find myself facing another accidental nap on the porch and just went straight back inside. I took an hour-long nap and was still tired after that. I definitely abandoned the idea of dusting.

I tend to forget how much cleaning takes it out of me. If you think about it though, if you're doing a good job it is pretty serious exercise, though it isn't valued as such. It does involve a whole lot of moving around, getting down on your knees and using muscles you aren't really used to using. I can remember countless times pre-diagnosis when I would try to do just a little bit of cleaning and end up completely flattened. I used to be very confused as to why it was so exhausting. Sweeping especially kills me- all that standing up nonsense. How dare I think about walking around like that, moving my arms, haha. It's too much physical work, so I leave it to my dad. At least these days I usually remember to save the cleaning I do have to do for days when I don't have anything else.