I honestly have no idea when the last time I wrote was. I hate that I’ve let something that I once loved and absolutely enjoyed doing fall by the wayside. Six years ago, I could be found hunched over the keyboard of my broke-ass laptop I got after my divorce at Wal-Mart for $250, my fingers tapping away diligently on the keyboard (that I fucked up by trying to clean out all of the dog hair; I pried half of the keys off before I realized a person could just unhinge them. I couldn’t get the ones I had ripped off back on, so I got an external keyboard and felt like a goddamn hobo whenever I used it. Classy, no?), the words flowing from my fingertips.
Ah. Those were the days.
Now? It’s been months since I’ve attempted to write; even longer for anything that resembled a fictional short story. I feel that when we were dealing with my father’s grim prognosis and death, I decided that is when nothing in my warped mind could possibly hold a candle to the fucked-up reality that was before me, so I stopped writing short stories.
And here we are tonight. I was rather taken aback by the long forgotten but still familiar tug at my brain to write something. Anything. A goddamn recipe would suffice, for crissakes. A friggin’ to-do list, anything that gets me in front of the soft glow of my computer screen. I recently started taking classes at my friendly local community college and have found myself plastered in front of the screen a few* hours a night, but we all know that isn’t the same.
*Six. Six hours a day because it’s been a miserable amount of time since I’ve attended academia and this bitch is rustier than a trombone. And I’m only taking two classes. God help me if/when I get into nursing school and have to learn how to not kill people and shit.
So, what should I discuss this evening? We all know the world is fucked right now, thanks to the pathetic excuse of a human being that barely resembles the president of the United States. (Fun aside: I took espanol in high school and it always delighted me to say the Spanish name for United States: Estados Unidos. It rolls off the tongue so fluidly. I love it. Te llamo Erin, soy de los Estados Unidos. Goddamn, that’s good).
I could prattle on about depression, like the sad little broken record I am.
Okay, I will for a second because goddamn depression and anxiety. I haven’t been on medications since the first of the year because I decided that having tried 11 different ones in the span of a few years was a wee bit excessive and to have maybe one work-ish wasn’t worth the hassle or the fabulous side effects of said medications, so I have been pharmaceutical-free for the last five months. In general, I applaud this decision. Don’t get me wrong; psych meds work wonders for many people. I just happen to not be one of those people, which is neato. I don’t make enough serotonin, but once you introduce an SSRI to me, I develop symptoms of serotonin syndrome, which is a hoot and a holler.
For the most part, I manage fairly well without medications. But then, and I should really start keeping track of this, but then every other month or so, I just lose it. I fall into a depression, my anxiety skyrockets to impressive heights, and I bury myself into reclusion. I know I should reach out to people who seem to genuinely care about my wellbeing and express to them, “hey, not doing so hot at the mo’,” but in lieu of serotonin, I seem to have a surplus of stubborn, and I opt to wallow in silent misery alone until I snap out of it and go into remission for a bit, only to have the vicious cycle start over again, which truth be told, is the reason I felt compelled to write this evening: I’m also notorious for having the worst communication skills in the state of Nebraska, and my go-to line for whenever anyone asks me how I’m doing is to plaster a fake smile on my chubby cheeks and say through clenched teeth, “fine! Thanks for asking! More importantly, how are you doing?”
I’m a treat, lemme tell ya.
Why am I in my regularly schedule funk? Well, that’s a good question and I’m glad I asked it for you and am going to reply to myself/you via this blog post:
As I mentioned earlier, I started taking classes. I started the day before yesterday, actually. Microbiology and an online math refresher course, to be exact. The math is going to kill me, if I may be overdramatic for a minute, please. I suck at math. My brain does not compute math. I can squeak by with the basic fundamentals of arithmetic, but once you throw in exponents and square roots or anything over a 5th grade comprehension level, my eyes glaze over in dazed confusion and I forget what 2 + 2 is (x to the 5th, apparently). I’ve been out of school for about 11 years and obviously, have gotten rusty in the ol’ maths department, so in order for me to enroll for classes, I had to take a placement test. As expected, I scored abysmally low in the math department, which baffles me because when I was a student in 2005, I got asked to be a math tutor. Either I’ve gotten way more idiotic over the last 11 years, or that math class was ridiculously easy. Anyway, low score, but the college offers this neat program where you can do online self-study in math in an effort to prepare you to take the placement test again and hopefully score higher, meaning you can potentially skip a class or two. I hope all the fundamentals come back to me in a great big sweep of recollection and I test out of two classes, but I’m not holding my breath. I’m not denigrating myself; it’s the gosh honest truth: I was created with a more…not math-y brain. Math and fire baaaaaaad!!
Apologies for the sidetrack. Back on course now-isa. Anyway, as mentioned twice, I started classes. My ultimate goal, which hopefully comes sooner than later, is to apply for the nursing program and get my RN degree. People seem to think I have the tools necessary to cut the mustard for this advancement in my career, and I hope to shit y’all are right. I’m a flurry of emotions about this because it’s me and of course I am.
- Many late night thoughts of “what the motherfuck am I doing? What. Am. I. Doing.”
- I don’t need student loans this time around, thanks to my father. Granted, I’m still in debt from previous student loans, but as least I don’t have to add to that staggering amount this time around. Also: why in the fuck didn’t we elect Bernie Sanders and everyone can have free college tuition? Why? Oh, that’s right: we all suck assholes, that’s why.
- Because I am doing this finally…when I probably should have done this from the get go, but I’ve always been a slow learner. Why, people tell me things and I choose to ignore them until I’m ready accept it! What fun!
- My goddamn dad, man. All throughout his ordeal with colon cancer, he praised me and my knowledge of the medical field and expressed his desires for me to further my education and go back to school to become a nurse. I’d explain his labs to him (your LFTs are a little high, Dad. Your white count looks great this time, Dad! Silly stuff like that), and in return, he’d gush about how I need to get back to school and well, while stubborn and slow, I do eventually listen kinda, and here I am. I also might add that my mother and my sister-in-law have been verbally harassing me for the last 9 months about it, so I hope they kindly shut their damn faces now.
- I’m not old by conventional standards, but in college standards, I am old as eff. I fully understand that non-traditional students make up a large majority of the school place, but I’ll be goddamned if it still isn’t intimidating as fuck to see 18 year old babies crawling the halls of the school, which is also super dumb because I work with college kids at my job, and I guess I’ll never get used to the precious angels.
I’m overwhelmed, for real. I’m sure I need time to acclimate myself back to the flow of school, because it’s only been two days, but if you haven’t noticed, I can be bit difficult on myself and expect some semblance of perfection and when I’m a far cry from that, I get a bit pissy with myself.
So, school is stressing me out. Life is stressing me out. Relationships are stressing me out. Being stressed out is stressing me out. It’s been fabulous.
A life aspect is my uncle. Dude has smoked for around 40 years and this is probably a direct correlation to this, but the veins in his legs are just shot to shit and he had to have vein bypass surgery on his leg a week ago and he had a huge, gangrenous ulcer on the bottom of his foot due to the shitty circulation in his legs, and my mom lectured both my brother and me about quitting and while I saw my uncle’s wound up close and personal, I’m still like, “puff puff, baby! I hope I lose my right leg to shitty circulation, too, because that’s my bad knee leg and two birds, one stone!” I am so stupid, it causes me physical pain. While Ma was politely yelling at me to quit this past weekend, I did have the stronger than usual urge to quit. I had a pack left and I was giving myself mini pep talks that once that pack was done, I was done. Oh, ho ho ho. Precious Erin, you are such a delightful, foolish imp of a woman. So I guess the fact that a 3 inch patch of full-thickness dead tissue on the bottom of a foot due to years of smoking isn’t enough to snap me out of my goddamn stupidity. Cool. I hope I can do some sweet beat-boxing with my voice box when I have my goddamn tracheotomy in a few years. I. Am. A. Robot. Beep. Boop. Beep. And then I’ll fuckin’ inhale a cigarette through the stoma in my neck and scare little kids. It’ll be hilarious.
All I will say about relationships of any sort is that I am glad I am in school because now I have a valid excuse to hide out and hopefully people will take the hint that I am a rotten friends and slowly realize that I am not worth the time, energy, and effort it takes to remain in my life and they bail on their own accords. I won’t be upset or anything. My theory is that all of my friends have been looking for an easy out for years anyway, so I have provided them with the perfect opportunity to do just that: get out while you can! Save yourselves! Oh god!
Fun part of depression is the self-deprecation.
I should probably give Therapist a buzz here soon because whatever wonderful voodoo magic she sprinkled on me has worn off and I feel myself slipping into the bad habits of before, and I had come such an admirable length before I stopped going to see her. Damn it.
In summation, while this isn’t a short story, it isn’t fictitious in any way, shape, or form, nor does it start with a clear beginning or finish strong at the end, I goddamn wrote something and just remember that new mothers applaud when their kids can hold their giant bobble heads up for the first time, so don’t you judge me, Martha. I, too, am I giant bobble head baby.
That’s all for tonight. May your roads be straight and your days be short, and in the words of the immortal Red Green: “keep your stick on the ice.”
As usual and always, thank you for reading (mom).