Friday, January 11, 2013

On the Tenth Day, I Sinned

One of my goals for 2013 was to lay off on the yarn buying for a while.  I have a whole, fancy new cabinet full of the stuff, so it's not like I'm hurting for something to knit or anything.  I was doing pretty well until yesterday, when Mom said, "Hey, do you want to go to Michael's?  They're having a sale on yarn."


I went with the best of intentions.  I was needing a pair of size 10 dpns (double pointed needles for the non-knitters- they're used for making circular things, like hats or socks), and I figured it wouldn't hurt to just *look* at the yarn.  And I set myself a small budget, in case there was anything that was just too good of a deal to pass up.

This is what I came home with:

The two giant bags are from Michael's.  The smaller bag is from a small LYS (Local Yarn Shop in knitter talk) called Starstruck Cat.  Mom talked me into going there, too.  And again, I went in with the best of intentions.  This time, I was looking for a set of size 13 dpns.  13s are big, maybe as big around as a finger, depending on how big your fingers are, and they aren't always easy to find.  I came out with the dpns and this beautiful yarn:

Isn't it gorgeous?

The little bag from Starstruck Cat cost as much as one of the giant bags from Michael's, but the yarn from Starstruck Cat is the good stuff: soft, cuddly merino.  It's going to make a lovely hat, for me this time!

Between the two stores, I managed to seriously blow the budget.  But the Michael's stuff was on sale for a really good price, and it's all going to be made into hats for donation, so I'm not going to beat myself up about it too much.

And after all, I've managed to keep my resolution not to buy any more ebooks... so far.

ETA: On the positive side, I've already finished a charity hat from some of the new yarn I bought.  It came out kind of cute, I think!

And a view from the top:

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Just Putting It Out There

The other day a read a blog post by someone who has a movie buddy.  Every once in a while they get together for a daylong marathon of the indie gay romances that they both love.  Can I just say, this sounds completely AWESOME?!?!  Living with my parents, I pretty much limit my watching of anything with significant gay characters to after they've gone to bed or while they're out of the house.  It isn't worth the hassle I'd have to put up with, even for something I really enjoy.

So I'm putting it out to the Universe right now.  I want to find a local friend to get together with occasionally, who enjoys those kinds of movies, and maybe even some of the same books I do, and won't think I'm a total weirdo or spout a bunch of homophobic crap.  (Also, if they like the occasionally other girlie movie, that would be good.  I had plans with my SIL to see Magic Mike that got cancelled- twice- before it came out that my brother wouldn't "let" her see it.  That pisses me off and skeeves me out in about equal measure.)

It would be really nice to have someplace I felt like I could be myself in real life, and not just on the internet.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Normies Don't Get It

The other day I was attempting to help out in the kitchen.  I rinsed a few dishes and put them in the dishwasher, and then all the sudden my back locked up like Fort Knox.  Stupid back.  Mom saw it happen, and she shooed me away from the sink.

At this point, I made a mistake.  I opened my mouth.  "Someday," I said, "I'm going to have my dream house, where everything is set up so that I can sit down to do the dishes or work at the stove."

"NO," Mom said.  "Someday you will be better, and you won't need that stuff."


I've been at this chronic disease thing for five and a half years now.  A drop in the bucket compared to some, and really just the start, since I will be dealing with this stuff in some form for the whole rest of my life. That's what chronic means.  It's not going away.

In the really early days, I still believed that every new med was The One.  The medication that was going to Fix me.  The medication that would make me Healthy and Normal again.  They've all had some effect.  But none of them transported me back to the land of the healthy.  I haven't had another near-death crisis, for which I am endlessly thankful, but I haven't had more than a scattered handful of truly good days since early 2007, either.

After a while, after some hits and misses, some brief bouts of improvement and really miserable side effects, you learn not to hope too hard.  I mean, you always have to hope.  If you can't hope at all you might as well lay down and die.  (And perhaps consider getting a referral and some anti-depressants.  No shame.  An awful lot of us in the chronic community need that kind of help.  Constant illness is depressing as fuck.)  This next drug is based on a different treatment pathway.  Maybe it will be the one that makes a difference.  Someone I know tried this kind of alternative treatment, and they saw improvements in these areas.  Maybe I'll try that too, when I scrape up the money.  See?  Hope.

But it's a cautious hope.  A hope that doesn't put all it's eggs in one basket.  A hope that never asks for too much.  Not a normal life.  Not to be able to work again, or go out with friends, to travel regularly, or to be able to do my own damn dishes all in one go without having to sit down and take a break for a while.

I know Mom was trying to be helpful.  But by rejecting my reasonable hope-- a hope that someday I'd live in a house that worked around my needs, rather than me struggling to work with what's there-- she squashed me pretty flat.  Her hope was too big, too militant, too unrealistic.  She still hopes that someday the magic pill will come, and I'll be able to live just like everyone else.  I've tried all but two medications currently on the market for my disease.  I'd say there's a reasonable chance that I'll be trying one of those two before the year is out.  The other one is strictly monitored by the FDA, because one of it's "side effects" is brain eating fungus.  I don't think my magic pill is coming any time soon.

So I keep my hopes small.  More days where I don't hurt too bad.  Less time in the bathroom.  More energy.  The chance to push my life out past these four walls.  I can't hope as big as my mother does for me.  The fall would kill me just as surely as my disease would, if given the chance.