it’s been a crazy few weeks

so it’s been a while since I last updated y’all on everything.

my family came in on Monday 6/12 and left Sat 6/17. in the party was my mother, my father, my little bro (he’s 27), and my brother’s friend. overall, we had lots of fun! Monday was just them recovering from the two-day drive. Tuesday, Brian joined the whole lot of us in walking around the Mall of America for 10 hours. that’s right, I typed 10. hours. but in those hours, we flung balls around during putt-putt, went cut up at the aquarium, got lost in a mirror maze, and cut up with strangers the whole time. Wednesday, Brian and I both worked. each Thursday and Friday, I worked only in the morning; Brian still worked all day. Thursday, I took the family and bro’s friend through the skyway. I had never walked it, so it was new to me too. then Friday, I took them out to St Paul to see the cathedral. (St Paul is one of the patron saints of my family’s catholic church back home.) then they departed around noon on Saturday when I had to leave for a volunteer work function.

OH! but while I was at work one day, guess what happened…… THE BEAST WAS EVICTED FROM THE OFFICE!! I mean, it took all four of my guests to capture the creature. but they did so, and Contact came to pick it up. it’s gone!! oh, what glorious days are these!!

last week, much time was spent repairing the apartment from all our guests. see, the four visitors slept in the living room. so we had no office and no living room for a week. it was exhausting. as was the clean-up.

then last Tuesday, my car overheats and never sufficiently cools enough for me to drive it. had to replace the entire radiator. not fun at all. so I was back to bussing to work for about a week. got it back Friday, right before the weekend. for which I was thankful, as I had a busy weekend planned.

Saturday was a workout day (more on that in another post); then I had a therapy appointment. I’m wondering why I’m going anymore. I want to ask her at the next session wtf exactly are we doing, what are we working on? she said at one point that she wanted to work on my negative talk. sure, that’s great. but when are we to start it??

anyway, after that, I went to the store to get hair dye and bleach. OMG, the colour did not turn out as it was supposed to. everyone during the weekend commented positively on it. but still. I’m having to re-dye it so I can keep my job. it’s way too bright. I’ll see about trying to upload a photo later. in the meantime, just imagine hot pink with a hint of pastel pink in it. eek!

Saturday night, Brian and I went to see the play “Booty and the Beast”. it was comedy skits influenced by social media, online dating, and Disney flicks. XD it was hilarious.

Sunday was the famous Minneapolis Pride Parade & Festival. and it was AWESOME. so much love and acceptance. and some of my kink friends were there, so I go to meet them IRL finally. and my hair was a hit there, of course. 😀

so yeah. it’s been an eventful few weeks. sorry for my absence. but I’m back, and I’m looking forward to catching up on what YOU’ve been doing. ❤

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that darn cat

we thought The Cat had escaped.  like, completely.  we thought it got out of the Office and left through Zero’s pet door back out into the wild.  this has been a concern since Thu afternoon.

we moved this week’s Date Nite to Monday, and we almost just didn’t have it because I was having a breakdown about this stupid cat.

then this morning, Brian swears he heard a noise in front of him, while Zero was behind him.  also, dry food that we had forgotten about (outside the live traps) was all gone, and it was on top of the giant tower — where Zero is very unlikely to go.  there was also something knocked off the tip top of the highest bookcase — also a non-Zero location.

so there’s a possibility…

I just wish we knew for sure.  and I really hope we catch her before my parents come up in five days…

an update on The Cat

it’s over a week later, and I still can’t drive my stick-shift car or do my kickboxing because of Motherfucking Bastard.

Brian and I are aiming to return to Urgent Care tomorrow evening for a follow-up.  my thumb is still generally useless.

Contact emailed me yesterday to inquire as to how The Cat was doing, to let me know we may have an adopter, and to inform me the upcoming meeting has been rescheduled.  in my response, I was honest [names changes, of course]:

The Cat is still really skittish and hiding.  I’m concerned that our fostering her didn’t help much, as we are so rarely home.  Also, as we discussed on the phone that one night, she went from letting me pet her the first few days to hissing even when I would put food in the cage.  😦  We’re still trying to socialize her and the like, but again we are not home as often as she apparently now needs.
My parents and brother are coming into town from Louisiana sometime on Monday, June 12 (exact time currently unknown).  I can’t promise I can make the meeting, but I will try my best to.  Would we be able to return The Cat before then?  In further thought, I’m concerned the loudness of my family may frighten her.  (My dad and brother are very loud people, lol — even their “indoor voices”.)
Let me know what works for you and what you think would be best for The Cat.  I’m fairly flexible.
I never mentioned my hand.  I don’t think I will.  I don’t want her making a big deal out of it.  I just want this over and done with.
we still haven’t really seen The Cat.  Brian spotted her once before she slinked away into hiding again.  but that’s it.  to catch her, I’m afraid we’ll need a live trap.  that’s not a sign of a cat having been socialized.
I’m concerned this will affect my involvement with and acceptance in the organization that runs the adopt fairs and earns money for clinics (henceforth “The Org”).  I enjoyed volunteering for The Org, and I really support and appreciate what they do.  but Contact may use this experience as negative weight against my involvement with The Org.  and that would make me legit sad and disappointed.
granted, I have five million other organizations with which I volunteer, plus random things here and there (like a 5k event this weekend that I’m working instead of participating in).  but that’s not the point.  I don’t get turned down; I don’t denied: people don’t tell me “no”.
…but I guess that’s a topic for another, more psychological post.
for now, we’ll continue to hold on to The Cat.  I’ll let y’all know how this all unfolds.

three days serviced by Urgent Care

I was in Urgent Care on each Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday of this week, with threats that I might have to go to the hospital to have surgery on my hand.

I volunteer with numerous different organizations here in the Twin Cities, many of them relating to animals.  one such organization, that I shan’t name in this context, needed some help fostering two feral kittens a while back.  with Brian’s approval, I volunteered.  shortly after, my contact (henceforth “Contact”) for the fostering said it wouldn’t be necessary, as she found someone else.

a few weeks pass, and Contact requested again that I foster the kittens.  I agree.  when next she contacts me, she informs me she needs me to foster an adult feral from Mexico (henceforth “The Cat” or “Motherfucking Bastard”).  I hesitate.  I’ve assisted in and/or have fostered all ages of cats before.  but my guy was telling me this was a bad idea for both The Cat and me.  however, I didn’t want to back out of a volunteering offer I made, so I reluctantly agreed.

I’m back at work, but I’ve a brace on my right hand.  the pain is so great that I can’t even drive my stick-shift car or hold a glass of water.  I could not wear pants due to my inability to zip or button them.

Contact arrived with her “kitty condo” — something similar to this –, explaining that she was hoping we’d keep The Cat in it and inside the room in which we spent the most time.  that would be the Office.  again, I had reluctance.  my tactic was always keep the feline in the bathroom — she had space to hide, but would still be exposed to use frequently.  but it was her cat I was fostering, so I followed her rules.

at this point, The Cat was responding well enough to me.  she let me pet her and almost never hissed at me.  by the third day, however, she was hissing more than she let me pet her.  she also had begun yowling at night and pacing in her cage.  it was obvious she was growing miserable in that small, enclosed space wherein she had no control over her visibility.

the trick is to give them somewhere they can hide slightly if they like, and let them come out at their own time.  this tactic has never failed me.

by the end of the week, I would get near the cage and she would hiss.  her yowling was incessant.  and even Zero was getting upset with the situation.

I called Contact and explained that this wasn’t working.  after brief discussion, Contact and I decided I would still keep her in the office (per her request), but that she’d be out of the cage (my request).

and that’s when all hell broke loose.

the pain in my hand is so great I am occasionally taking Vicodin.  me, with my high-ass pain tolerance.

Brian and I walk the Office trying to remove as many too-small hidey holes as we could.  I thought we had done a sufficient job….

Saturday afternoon, while transitioning The Cat from the cage into the room, she spazzed and escaped into the living room.  it was my fault for not ensuring the Office door was closed; that fact, I will own.  in an attempt to collect and relocate her, she scratch Brian on the nose and bit deeply into my right hand.  nevertheless, I got her into the office with no actual physical pain on her part (as far as I could tell).

and then she was MIA for two whole days.  she did not come out to eat, drink, or use the litter.  I was terrified she got herself into a hidey hole we couldn’t find, and was going to starve herself to death.  I was terrified that I had now scarred her forever, and she’s in a worse sociable condition now than when we first got her.  I was terrified of so many things.

at one point, an IV drip of antibiotics was rushed into my body, as mere oral dosages were too inadequate for the severity of the infection.

meanwhile, my hand was swelling up and turning red.  Brian urged me to the doctor; I denied — both repeatedly.  then one of the bite marks started to puss, and I had lost most mobility in my thumb.  I reluctantly agreed to go Sunday evening.

the doctors expressed great concern that, even thought The Cat was fully vaccinated, I may have an infection that was starting to go after a tendon or the bone.  while I was sitting on an IV drip of antibiotics, I was also prescribed oral antibiotics and Vicodin for pain.  I mistakenly expressed no need for the pain medication; let’s just say I have since been very glad multiples times that we got it filled anyway.  I was instructed to come back ASAP the next day.

I messaged and emailed the attorneys at work a brief tale of my misadventure, requesting to remotely do payroll from home so that I can then promptly go back to Urgent Care to get my hand reviewed.  my supervisors are very wonderful, understanding persons.  they approved my request with no hesitation, informing me to let them know if they could help in any way.

back at Urgent Care Monday afternoon, my hand showed signs of neither worsening nor improving.  after some discussion and inspection, the doctor braces up my arm.  I’m instructed to once again return to Urgent Care the following day.  this time, if no improvement was evident, hospitalization would be required — surgery to either mend the wound or amputate part of the hand.

when got home that day, Monday night, we see evidence that Motherfucking Bastard emerged and ate her food.  we still have no idea where she is hiding.  but at the moment, it’s not our top concern.  the potential necessary removal of my right hand was.

I work a full day on Tuesday, very slowly and almost ineffectively.  after work, Brian takes me once again to Urgent Care.  three times in three days.  this time, however, there was evident visual improvement of both the infectious redness and of the swelling.  I was released on the condition of continuing taking my antibiotics (and probiotics) as instructed and that if it at any point gets worse, I was to just give up and go to ER.

once again, The Cat had emerged ate, and even new feces was in the litter box.

so where are we at now?  it’s Thursday morning.  how is The Cat doing?  how is James’s hand?  how is Brian’s face?  what all does Contact know of situation?  for how long are those fools going to keep The Cat?

Brian’s hand and face were fine.  he’s on the same antibiotic plan as me, minus the initial drip.  by day two, everything was cool for him.

my hand is healing, albeit slowly.  I still can’t really use it for anything.  I can type on a full-sized keyboard for the most part, though my usual usage of countless keyboard shortcuts are limited and typos are abound.  however, I cannot use my right hand, thumb, or index finger for: texting on my phone, anything that requires fine motor skills, anything that requires more than minor grip or holding, anything that requires muscle usage in the aforementioned areas.  as I’ve already stated, I couldn’t even wear pants to work for several days because I could not operate the zipper or buttons.  I’m wearing clip pants today, and I’m learning that was a bad idea.

Motherfucking Bastard is somewhere still in the room.  I don’t know where.  the current plan is keeping her for the next two weeks.  at that point, I will return her to Contact, explaining that Zero is not pleased and my family are coming with their dog the following week.  however, if she continues to not emerge at all while we are in the room, eating and shitting only while we are at work or asleep, I may send her back sooner.  it’s doing no one any good if she is that terrified.

and currently, Contact knows nothing after the phone call wherein we came to a compromise of letting The Cat loose in the Office.  I wanted to wait to see how things panned out first.

I tried to keep identity of the involved people, animals, and organizations.  but I may never foster via that group again; I will, however, still help and volunteer because of what their primary goals are.  there’s a difference between fostering feral cats, and housing a yowling monster.

that’s not to say Contact isn’t kind.  she purchased us a new super-large litter box with Zero, provided a ton of dry and food wet and of cat litter for The Cat, and even gave me a Starbucks giftcard as thanks.  but I think their system of fostering just doesn’t sync with me.

I guess I just won’t ever have insurance…?

I started my current job in late September.  early October, I sent in paperwork to the state letting them know that I can now afford to get off the assistance insurance plan I was on.  I never heard anything, and kept getting services and meds for practically free.

December comes along, and I send in another completed form.  again, radio silence from them.

April 10th, I receive a letter stating that my coverage ended on March 30th.  firstly, thanks for the heads up.  secondly, finally.  (I can afford to pay for my own insurance, so I want to.  I want the funds to go to the people who need it, not to people who are scamming the system; and I didn’t want to be that person.)

so I get onto MNsure.org, which is the method that most Minnesotans use to find their insurance plan, and I submit my application.  a few days later, I log on, but it looks like nothing was fully processed.  so I was on the phone between MNsure.org (via whom I purchased the insurance) and Medica (the actual insurance company) countless times, being on hold and/or transferred for most of a phone call.  I’m talking 40-minute holds just to talk to the first person, much less all the bouncing back and forth that follows.  Medica: “tell MNsure this.”; MNsure: “well, tell Medica that.”  it was like being between two people standing face-to-face who are doing that “I’m not talking to Sally” thing.  wtf.

additionally so, these places are only open on typical 8-5 schedules.  I have  a 30-minute lunch, and I’m expected to magically make a 40-minute hold time fit into 30-minutes?  again, I ask: WHAT. THE. FUCK.

eventually I somehow speak with humans just last week who said they were pushing my application through.  YAY!  she adds that I need to make sure I’m not late on the first payment — whose invoice should arrive in 60 days.  wut?  why so long??  you know what, whatever.  I just need insurance right now.  I’ll deal with down the road then.  we know we have the money for it, so we’re good.  and if this lady is pushing through my application, that means soon I can get the prescriptions that have been waiting for me at my pharmacy.

I go online over the weekend to see about getting a temporary insurance card, or at least some ID and Rx numbers.  but nothing.  it’s still blank.

so yesterday I call around and learn that my application has not yet been pushed through. BAH!

so today, I cheated.  while I started the call at the beginning of my lunch.  I stayed on the call after lunch was over; I ensured I was doing work-stuff at the time, of course!  I wasn’t cheating that bad.  and they mentioned I could call 10-minutes early from my lunch to get through some of the hold time.  so whatever.  I need to get this handled.

after being on the phone with these organizations for OVER AN HOUR AND THIRTY MINUTES TODAY ALONE, I gave up.  I’ll try again tomorrow.

THIS. IS. PREPOSTEROUS.

at the one-hour mark, I was livid.

I think I’m just going to have to take a day or a half-day off and go to some office and handle this shit IRL.  because 1] I don’t want to get hit with a fine for not having insurance; 2] I need insurance for my meds and my docs.

speaking of which, I had to cancel my psych appointment for tomorrow because I HAVE NO INSURANCE.

I hate everything related to US health care right now.  like, even more than usual.

work nigh resulted in self-injury

I was lying on my side, repeating a phrase with which was I was far too familiar. at the “ch” sound in the collection of words, I felt the top of my tongue bounce of the roof of my mouth in a familiar pattern. “I hate you. I hate you. I hate you. I hate you.”

I couldn’t breathe out of my nose, and I could barely transmit breathes past the sounds I was chanting. my eyes burned, and I could feel the air against the entire surface of my eyeballs. tears from the topside eye flowed into the lower. snot was dribbling out of my nostrils, passing just above my upper lip and down onto the couch.

but I didn’t cut. I didn’t pull out any hair. I only hit my head a few time. I didn’t scratch or burn or bite, or anything else that I wanted so terribly to do. I didn’t even drink. I Disappeared for a little bit to calm down, also known as purposefully disassociating. then I slowly rose and took a klonopin. I had no reason to be alive, and even less reason to be awake. I actually had a say-so in the latter, so I worked towards a goal — Disappear until tomorrow.

as I swallowed the pill, a shot of memories ran past my mind as I recalled how what was previously such a wonderful day pushed me into this dark, hateful place….

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should we be alright with being mediocre?

only 2.5 of the numerous jobs I’ve had did I very actively not like.  1.5 of them were retail (I say a half because I liked the job at first; it just got old and certain changes yielded to my starting to dislike it), and one of them was a call center.  all of the others, I actually didn’t mind going to work most days.  some days, I even really enjoyed it.

I’m on the fence about this one.  I like what I do — I like the money management, I like the paperwork, etc.  and I like for whom we do it — impoverish people who are just trying to have a new start in life, or who were unjustly attacked or injured.  and I even like most of the people I work with.  but when something here stresses me out, I bring it home and I obsess over it for several days later.

I allowed a few tears last night because of yesterday’s miscommunication.  because I’m just tired of it.  and I still am not sufficiently fluent in Spanish.  and I keep messing things up.

I asked Brian last night how do people endure working somewhere they hate.  he said, from what he’s come to understand, is that in most cases they just don’t care about the job they do.  they text, or play on Facebook, or take forever to do Job A to avoid having to do Job B, etc.  they don’t actually try most times, nor do they really care about their quality of work.

I can’t fathom that.  I mean, it makes sense.  it really does.  and I can see if from an employee’s view and from a customer’s view the poor service many people provide in various jobs.  but I can only see that a possibility; surely that can’t be reality.

that’s one reason I left the half-disliked job — the changes they made ensured I would not be able to do my best work in the position, and I wasn’t okay with that.

when I was at the call center, I tried to help every single customer to the best of my ability.

because that’s what we’re supposed to do, right?  how can we expect good service from others if we’re not providing it ourselves?  how can we ever improve or grow as individuals if we’re not challenging ourselves?  how is acceptable to okay at be shitty?

so maybe he’s right….  maybe I care too much about the quality of work I do.  maybe I’m at fault for having respect for others and for my job.

and I would love to say, “well here on out, I’ll be alright doing mediocre work just like everyone else.”  but I know that’s a lie.  so I’ll just stay in this job, and I just keep going home miserable, and I’ll keep crying and struggling.  because even I wanted to, I don’t think I could sacrifice my integrity just to make my life easier.