Not (now) drunk but hurting like hell.

There’s a word for it.

Down. Down down down, suicidally down.

There’s another word, more precise, than that. Heartbreak.

My heart was breaking last night. Thus the post preceding.

It still is. But today I’m not under the effect of alcohol. Plus am beginning to process the heart breaking.

The situation and person involved are oh so very personal. Exposure/writing online, not gonna happen.

Suffice it to say that it’s someone I’ve known a very long time, more than 30 years, more than half my life.

A breaking heart makes for a memorable Christmas / holiday season.

I don’t cry easily or much any more. I used to. Childhood into adolescence was swamped with storms, tears of rage and pain and anguish — copious amounts far above the norm. All connected to home, parents, stuff I’d never return to even if a time machine allowed.

Later I learned to stuff the tears. Wall them off. Self-preservation.

So at 59, I very rarely cry and usually only when alcohol loosens the stubborn tight grip on my heart’s emotions.

Last night copious tears flowed, quietly, privately, head down. I’m not a wailer or attention-getting crier. I just remember sitting at one of my hangout saloons, there because I know the Monday evening bartender, looking online at my phone — at what, I don’t remember — and occasionally wiping away massive tears. Like melted snowballs.

Then when I got “home” eating the large remainder of my Christmas cookies my son baked — drowning my emotions in food, as I’m wont to do — and watching Netflix and then switching out the light.

I barely remember all that.

I can’t distinguish how much was the alcohol (in quantity, hadn’t been much though) and how much the meltdown of a heartbreak in the happening.

It can feel a lot like being drunk.

It wasn’t on heartbreak alone that I wrote last night’s post. (How I managed to do it at all is pretty amazing given my distraught condition!) It’s other things.

All coalescing into getting slammed by a semi that suddenly came careening around the corner.

I’ve got to keep it together. I can’t afford more crises on top of the crises already on my plate.

Merry Christmas to me! Maybe not.

Happy New Year! We’ll see.

Life’s dealt me some hard blows of late. I just want and need OUT of where I’m living and INTO a better space so I can at least deal with this stuff better.

Still waiting on Santa to deliver on that one item on the Wish List.

Nuthin’ more to say except though I’m tempted, I’m not deleting the post prior (“one week …”).

It may be drunk blogging, partly. Mostly it’s heartbreak blogging. I’m gonna respect that and let it be.

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A Bar to Remember

Not that sort. Sorry, folks. This kind:

refrigerator door bar

refrigerator door bar

It’s a bar that goes on the inside of a refrigerator door. It sits in front of a built-in narrow shelf to restrain items like condiments, small bottles or containers.

When I moved in, that bar was already misshapen by stress. Bulging in the middle from restraining items too big for its capacity. So it was only a matter of time until it … yes … snapped! Who among us couldn’t say the same for ourselves?! 😉 It broke smack in the middle.

So, to repair, I rejoined the broken ends with strapping tape. It worked.

A conundrum arose when I was learned I must move. The bar. And not the fun type with whiskey and beers, laughter and tears!

In short — eight words to be exact: My property management company’s not to be trusted.

Its reputation for fining tenants for even the slightest repair, like a nail hole, and withholding deposits by the chunks if not entirety precedes them. I’d tell you its name so you can read one bad Yelp review after another after another but I wanna take no chances! Especially since I’m very soon to move and NEED that deposit!

Soooooo, I removed the strapping tape and tried to repair it. First with epoxy. Didn’t hold. Tried Superglue. Ditto.

That left one option. Buy a new bar.

Not as simple as it sounds. Fortunately the label on the fridge back is intact, enabling me to get the model number. With that, I was then able to identify the part number from a schematics map — thank you Internet! Schmematics with so many parts listed and labeled that it looked to be for a rocketship instead of a refrigerator!

After calling around locally for a used part and getting zilch, I succumbed to the only remaining option: Buy the replacement part: new. Not as easy as it sounds!

Evidently this part is no longer widely available. The only place that had it for a “decent” price was ApplianceZone.com.

So it appeared.

After ordering and waiting and waiting for a part that never arrived, I contacted them. Via a live chat. They don’t have a telephone option. Everything’s email or chat. That shoulda been my first clue.

When I asked when I’d be receiving the order, ApplianceZone.com couldn’t answer. Save with: “It’s on back order.”

“What?! I wasn’t told that when I ordered.” Sidenote: I need that bar. Because I’m moving.

Her response in short: “You didn’t ask.”

“WHATT?!? It’s up to the CUSTOMER to ask about whether a product is backordered?!?”

“Yes. To check whether we have it in stock.”

Were that I could reach my hand through the computer screen and bop her head on her desk hard a dozen times!

And I’m being civil!

“The manufacturer gives an estimated delivery date of July 27.” Or some such. Estimated. Translation: no idea when it’ll arrive.

After not one but two glorious {cough cough} live chats with two different ApplianceZone.com women, I decided: This is ridiculous! Enough! Immediately cancelled my order. Requested a refund. Washed my hands of ApplianceZone for infinity and pledged to spread the word by blog or by mouth!

So after all the less-than-impressive-something-smells-shoddy dealings with ApplianceZone, how’d I come to get a bar?

Sears. Good ol’ Sears.

They carry the Magic Chef fridge. And parts. The same part through Sears is about double the price at ApplianceZone. OUCH!

BUUUT! They could get the part. Ship it at no cost, as a courtesy said the very nice and helpful Sears lady. ON THE PHONE! No live chat!

And deliver the part within a week. So she said.

And so it is. The bar arrived this morning. Well-protected in its big box and the right size.

The punchline? The price. The bar’s about 19 inches wide, 2 inches wide and made of cheap clear plastic (no doubt made in China). Whaddya think this cost?

Magic Chef fridge door bar

Magic Chef fridge door bar

{pause}

Answer: About $40. Or 53 Canadian dollars. Yessirree, Bob!

But! Though it cost a small fortune for what it actually is — a slice of easy-to-break cheap plastic — I consider it a steal. My landlord would’ve charged two or three times that to replace the taped-up broken bar! Assuming, that is, that they would’ve.

Many things, you just can’t attach a price tag. This fridge bar’s one. What I lost — my patience with and regard for ApplianceZone.com for starters … also pushing forward through the aggravations and major hassle of simply identifying and locating the part! … I gained in peace of mind, thanks to strength of foresight. My landlord can’t screw me over on this one!

And THAT deserves a toast. At a real bar!

A case of Tylenol can’t cure this ailment!

How to describe it …

Okay. Pray to God you never experience this but you’re driving along one day on a stretch of country road and the fan belt breaks.

You gotta keep driving. Cousin Ellie Mae’s gettin’ married to your best friend Jimmy and you’ve got his ring.

So for the next hour-and-a-half, you listen to the split fan belt go thwack thwack thwack thwack thwack as it strikes metal of the bonnet.

Thwack thwack thwack thwack thwack thwack. Like a duck with a speech impediment.

You arrive at the wedding safely on time despite the rapping knocking of the fan belt. Everything’s swell.

Until you gotta leave. Get back in your car. And have to listen to thwack thwack thwack thwack thwack for the next five hours straight. Rap music without lyrics or melody. Only the rhythm of a persistent flat monotone.

Thwack thwack thwack. A fan belt striking metal only reminding of a costly repair ahead upon your return.

In other words, my landlord hasn’t done squat about the thumping swamp cooler of Unit A above.

It’s massive! Nearly the size of a PT Cruiser — speaking of cars! It’s been thwacking, thumping and knocking — oh my! — since Day 1 when the neighbors turned it on.

A month ago.

I submitted a maintenance request. I knew the neighbors wouldn’t. I doubt they care — or even hear it inside their cushy nice cool digs.

The world around them certainly can hear it! Whether we want to or not. I hear it the loudest because it sits directly above my studio. I hear it whether I’m inside or on my small patio.

I hear it too because the thwackings bounce off the walls of the next building. The driving obnoxious intrusive sound made all the more so by an amplifying echo.

The landlord doesn’t give a you-know-what.

“We’re aware of the issue,” emailed Holly at the landlord’s office when I wrote a follow-up. “The servicemen are very busy.” Summer ‘n’ all. “They’ll get to it when they can.”

I knew straightaway: “They’re never comin’.”

A year from now, I could swing by this space and the damn thing’ll still be knocking.

This space has been fraught with noise issues from Day One. Literally Day One. That’s when I discovered that this studio’s not the haven of peace and serenity it appeared to be when I first viewed it.

No one above was home at the time. In fact, Apartment A had been vacant and was awaiting its new occupants. Who moved in the same time I did. Literally.

Everything went south. Noise. Noise noise noise noise noise and more noise. Don’t need or care to revisit that nightmare. But it drove me nuts!!

The nightmare’s soon to end. Within a month, I’ll be moving. Still don’t have the new place.

Point is: I’m moving.

So’s the neighbor’s swamp cooler. Thwack thwack thwack, sounds like a belt needing replacement.

Thwack thwack thwack. The sound of hard slappings of my hand on the landlord’s head in my imaginary world.

“Get the damn thing fixed! Respect your tenants! And the need for peace! You’re *paid* to maintain properties! So do it! Do what’s right!”

Thwack thwack thwack directly above. Bouncing off the walls.

Thwack thwack thwack. Filling my space inside and outside. Day, afternoon and/or night.

Thwack thwack thwack thwack thwack. No volume of music from my fine stereo can overcome it. Not even close.

Thwack thwack thwack thwack. Boring a hole into my head. Producing serious headaches.

Forcing me to leave the place I don’t call home. Not really.

Tha-tha-that’s all, folks! Off now to the library for some quiet.

Plus I need a new book.

At the top of my Wanna-Read list:

“Easy Cooler Care: A Self Help Guide to Servicing and Repairing Your Evaporative Cooler”

Trying to Trust. Trust What?

Income, livelihood, survival. And shelter.

It gets no more basic than that.

And both are once again “under assault.” Up for revision — and vision. Forced into upheaval, in terms of home, through no fault of my own and by forces greater than I. Others’ dictates yet again directing my life!

I’m so damn sick of it, I can’t even find the words!

Breathe. Breathe. Breathe.

I’m deeply worried about work. I am. A job opportunity {such as it was} — poof! — went away. On the first day that I was to train. Hell, I didn’t even get the apron on! The story’s not worth revisiting. Boils down to Corporate at its worst.

Still. It’s the only job offer in 11 months of dedicated looking & applying. Such the disaster, the American economy as destroyed by Obama & his Socialist-Marxist-liberal minions.

Home Sweet Changing Home

It’s old news that my lease wasn’t renewed. I don’t know why (though have my suspicions). And in Arizona, owners and landlords aren’t required to inform. They can kick you out if they don’t like the way you dress! Long as they give the required notice, you have no recourse.

I’m ticked off because I’m such a good tenant. Responsible, conscientious, verrrry clean and considerate of others. I treat any space as if it were my own with highest regard and respect.

On the other hand, I’m also thrilled to be leaving the neighbors above. The whole sounds situation has been hell for me from Day One, literally. For that reason, I’ve never *lived* here. But I’ve fled from here many many a time! 🙂

So What’s Next?

Who can say?! I’m focusing on what I want, not what I don’t want. This applies particularly to the next residence but employment as well.

I’ve a few key words / concepts that are my mantra for this next residence. I’ll be thrilled — joyful — if they come to pass! Time will tell and soon. I’m viewing a place tomorrow that comes available at the end of August — which coincides with when I need to be out.

I’m trying to trust. It’s not something I do (or do well). An exercise greater than any I’d find at the gym! Question is: When you’re trying to trust, what are you trusting? The universe? Spiritual forces of good? I dunno.

My simple prayer for today: May I move forward in grace and in the highest good for myself and all. Amen.

The practice

A lil’ salt, a lotta pepper …

Santa in August?

The Fed Ex truck passed by this morning and I got all anticipatory like a kid who’d just spotted Santa on Christmas Eve.

So like that kid with face not quite pressed to the window, I stood waiting and waiting in the event he’d pause on the way back down the hill.

He didn’t; in fact, he didn’t pass again at all.

Why the excitement over the Fed Ex truck? Because I aspire to be a Fed Ex driver? Because the driver’s a creature of beauty and charm? No.

It’s because my new MacBook Pro is due to arrive any day! Today’d be the soonest. I’ve already patiently waited years for this upgrade. What’s another day or two or three? Still, super ready and excited!

{And aware of the heaps o’ work the migration from a Powerbook with a PPC processor to a Pro with Intel chip will entail. I’ve prepared myself with research and homework so feel up to the task, closeted geek that I am. Still, a complicated, challenging migration to be sure.}

Tick tick tick tick tick

So goes the clock at the house a day after the roommate dumped my homemade hummingbird solution, apologized most insincerely, shouted verbal assaults, pushed me and stormed off.

Man, when simplified, sure makes her look bad.

That tick tick tick is the sound of the tension in the house. The sound of possibly another impending explosion from J.

{btw, reason I don’t write her first name that’s four letters and rhymes with Rudy is because I want to take NO chance of her stumbling upon my blog. Ever. Oh the hell that’d unleash in the house!}

Where was I? Tick tick tick. The sound of another possible explosion from “Rudy with a J.”

She won’t admit she overstepped the boundaries of respect, common courtesy and roommate decency. Won’t admit she was in the wrong in dumping my hummingbird solution. Won’t admit she was in the wrong pushing me and being truly an arrogant loud self-interested bitch from start to finish.

Thank god I’m looking for neither apology nor change from her! Life taught me well: One cannot make another change.

Too, tick tick tick goes the clock in my time remaining in this house.

“Rudy” and I have butted heads before. That’s misleading. It should read: “I’ve stood up to her gross and over-the-top controls before and got kneecapped and in the identical manner: with loud shouting argumentative dictator commands and ZERO listening, regard or respect.”

It’s who she is; it’s how she chooses to respond to issues.

This time, it’s different. There’s no resolution. No “sitting down and working it out by healthy communication.” HA!

No “reconciliation” — however superficial and shallow and designed to ward off warfare it be. Because living with “Rudy” means warfare or submission. No gray area. No in-between. Two extremes, all or nothing.

There is “Rudy” in anger running the house. There is me in my corner. Invisible — or trying to be — to preserve my life. “Maybe if I’m REAL quiet … REAL still … maybe if I don’t move … if I don’t breathe … they won’t notice me. And the attacks will stop. The assaults. The pain and the agony of isolation.”

No better could I describe my childhood. Boom! Right there.

I understand that this (home) situation is a re-enactment of my childhood. J. is playing the role — a character from my childhood — well.

My mission that I accept is to keep saying my affirmations.

“I thank J. for her part in my healing and transformation. I love and bless and forgive J. I let it all go. I love and bless and forgive myself. I go free in peace.”

It’s easy and tempting to get stuck in brooding. Isolated brooding, which is even worse.

It’s “easy” because it’s familiar. Practiced behaviors and responses to warfare and world crashing down around me every moment through childhood.

Change can be hard, even when it’s desired and you know necessary.

My mission now, as J. directs or potentially unleashes her negativity and anger upon me WHO DID NOTHING WRONG {highlight, bold, neon lights} … as J. abdicates all responsibility and makes ME the problem … is to:

a. breathe
b. embrace and be grateful for the teaching and the healing and the freedom this is leading me to, long as I accept this as a teaching it is;
c. forgive. forgive and then forgive again;
d. love myself. and if I can’t put it in those words or accept love of self, then begin with being kind to myself. kind, gentle and forgiving. it’s a start and step up from where I’ve been.

and:

e. look for a new place to live. keep looking even if it appears hopeless (i.e., “there are no rooms, no leads, no openings” … which for me can lead to “no chance, no hope, it’s all futile, I’m stuck here, I hate it here, my life is shit, I’m shit just like my mother said, what’s the point of anything, what’s the point of living …”

Old refrain.

Time for a new song! And that’s not only possible but doable thanks to being in, finally!, the right place/town/state!

I began this post thinking it’d be a series of blurbs. Apparently I had more to say than I thought. Anyhow, it’s all good and for me helpful to write and capture these moments live.

Someday soon I won’t be living in this house with “Rudy.” And I’ll want to look back on this chapter with fond memories.

I’m lyin’ through my teeth. 😉

the domestic cyclone alters course for a day

I didn’t know it was gonna happen. Didn’t know it was coming. 

If I had, I might’ve come home earlier after work yesterday. 

I might’ve opened the fresh bottle of pinot grigio earlier. Might’ve sat sooner in the side yard with my newspaper and the three dogs and watched the pass. 

Had I known my cyclonic roommate was gonna be away and that I’d have the house nearly to my myself — sharing it only with another roommate who holes up in his garage man cave — I’d-a come home earlier and enjoy the extraordinarily rare space and solitude. Definitely.

Wherever J. went isn’t a concern. Just that she’s gone somewhere — gotten outta the house at all for longer than an errand! — is reason to return home directly after work! Is reason to cut short or eliminate the frequent dilly-dallying that serves as procrastination and avoidance tools. 

Wherever J. went isn’t a concern. Just that she’s gone somewhere for longer than an errand is the reason the house is quiet. The cyclone has ceased and desisted — for  now.

Like the house, I too am at now — for now. I slumbered better — more fitfully and deeper than usual — for the house at rest. There were no loud sounds of doors opening and slamming. No shouts. No yelling for the dogs for their walks. No barking at the third roommate. No sound of the car starting up.

No sound of the cyclone crossing the carpet across the house.

Upon first awaking, I felt different. In that nebulous early state of consciousness when the brain’s slipping the gears into everyday gears. I didn’t know why. Recognized only  that I felt different. Better. More rested. In less physical pain. 

Then, as I came into focus in this world, the cause was revealed. I didn’t even hafta go searching for it! 

The roommate’s gone. The house is stilled.

What’s remarkable is that because of that, that seemingly small and innocuous alteration in daily living, my world improved. For the night.

Because of that small alteration — the temporary absence of a loud and obstructive roommate — my (w)holistic self gained rest.

My injured shoulder received a shot in the arm of healing. Positive indeed!

In case you ever wondered or doubted, let me assure that other people’s energies DO matter and do affect the surroundings. They affect me, especially as a Pisces, aka a walking sponge.

J.’s absence is welcomed. I wish it’d continue for a week. Bet I’d get more sleep and rest and peace and healing effects in that single week than I would in three months in her domain and under her dominion!

Not to be overlooked: Yesterday — Saturday, July 26 — was the new moon in Leo, at 3 degrees. Coming up: creating a new vision board. 

Shhhhh, perhaps I ought not say it too loudly: How ’bout envisioning a residence without the loudmouth J.! — the domestic cyclone across the carpets.

 

 

 

Back Home. Uh, Not So Much.

Being back … being back “home” feels like putting on an old shoe that’s too tight.

Or a coat that constricts through the shoulders and back and underarms.

Being back … after being away and not just away but having a good time … feels familiar. Familiar not as in “comfortable” like many folks feel upon returning home after a trip.

Familiar as in old patterns and old ways and and old ways of relating that need to go.

After extending my stay in Flagstaff to the latest minute, partly so I’d arrive “home” after roommate J. had gone to bed, I arrived at night and pretty much went straight to bed.

Today, in the “glare” of the morning — and realities — and with the rest and enjoyments and perspectives gained in my albeit too-brief overnight trip — I see the need to move. 

Whenever a situation needs to be released, I ask myself: Is it them? or me? I mean, what if all that’s required is an attitude adjustment on my part to make this work?

What if it’s my blind spots that are causing distorting, causing me to view the situation through dark eyes?

What if all that’s needed is for me to improve my well-being, emotional and physical, is to change up my point of view?

Tricky stuff. And indicative of my innate cleverness and proclivity to otherthink things.

The heart. The heart holds the answers, they say. The heart never, or rarely, faileth. 

When I consult my heart, which in truth I don’t do nearly as consistently as I did in early years (but then, life’s hardships and disappointments hadn’t accumulated into the mountain of today either) …

… when I consult my heart, she whispers “let go. you need to grow. this {“home” situation] is old hat. a way of the past. like with Kingman (town of former residence) and elsewhere, you’ll find that the longer you stay, the worse it will become for you. {for your roommate, not at all.}”

“Overstaying does not bring benefits. august can be your transformative month,’ says spirit now. “Keep doing the beneficial things you’re doing for your health and well-being. Keep writing — every day. Keep looking for new employment and residence. It’s imperative to keep moving forward — and not use your energy for the usual hunkering down, gritting the teeth and bearing it out. Nothing good comes from that and will in fact only worse matters.”

That’s what I hear this first morning back at the house after travel. Though brief, the getaway was restorative. It was good. 

 

 

Home Alone. Uh, not so much.

Way I see it, I’m gettin’ some much-needed alone time. Even though where I’m goin’, there’ll be two people and two dogs!

Here’s the thing. My roommate and house owner/landlord is almost always here! In fact, I’ve got two roommates. The other is a male friend of hers. And though he’s usually here technically, he spends almost all of his time in his man cave in the garage. I often don’t even know if the guy’s here unless he hobbles into the kitchen!

Roommate J … when she’s here, you know. You know even if she’s in her office in the very back unseen part of the house! You know by her booming voice. Her phone calls that are audible at the far other end of the house. You know by her comings and goings about the house, her buzz.

Hell, she’s here even when she’s not here!

She’s got that presence. And I don’t mean presence of a divine angel watching over you, protecting you, intervening during mishaps, perhaps even saving you from an otherwise certain death. That’s actually happened to me, btw.

She’s got presence like a dictator has presence. Like a dictator makes known that it’s HIS nation, HIS rules, HIS punishments, HIS dictates, J. does similarly but obviously on a much smaller scale!

Her presence and rules and ways are so well-established here that, as I said, she’s here even when she’s not.

Trouble is, she’s almost always here! She works from home and doesn’t go out socially all that much. Her chair in the living room — which, incidentally, is also her space, I’m disallowed from hanging out there — is her throne from which she oversees her kingdom at {address unpublished} in Prescott, Arizona.

So strong is her presence and overriding her dictates that though I’ve got my own little space in one corner of the house, I don’t, REALLY. And I’m very very very rarely alone.

I’m someone who needs alone time. REAL alone time. Like the house EMPTY. And not for an hour while someone’s off running errands. I mean alone time. Like I don’t see someone for hours an’ hours an’ hours an’ hours.

This arrangement’s been in place since April 1.

So yeah, I’m feeling squeezed. Suffocated. Slowly strangled.

Hahah, ain’t that ironic Just now bumped into the roommate in the kitchen and she’s off to go play with horses. Meaning the house’ll be empty for a while! And I gotta go off to the friggin’ job!

Anyhow, what I’m getting around to sayin’ is that the other day I got news that my stepmother (not the proverbial wicked sort) and her sister and their two dogs will be passing through Flagstaff, in northern Arizona, about 2 hours from here, tomorrow. I was invited up for the night.

So I should be headin’ out to pay them a visit tomorrow. A visit that even with a group of four creatures in a large lively town will be more alone time than I’ve had in quite some time!

I’m excited to have the muzzle removed, even for but a day.

{is that a sad statement to make at age 57 or what?}