I spent Saturday in Dallas with my brother. We drove up there for a seminar on self development and although I didn’t let my brother know, I was more excited about the road trip than the actual seminar. It was a four hour drive from Houston. We picked up breakfast on the road and I slept for about two hours before waking up as we passed some vacant Texas town. We jammed a lot of our 90s favorites and chatted about relationships, politics and the universe.

***

I’ve been recovering from bronchitis which I caught a little over a month ago, so I still have sporadic coughing fits that leave me breathless and achy all around my chest and rib cage. When we finally arrived, I was hoping that I wouldn’t be coughing during the entire presentation and fortunately, I didn’t, but that’s because I popped three cough drops in the course of an hour.

IMG_2436

After the seminar, we went to eat tacos at a colorful taco spot called Velvet Taco located near downtown Dallas. My brother said it was very hipstery and I chuckled at the thought that he was probably right. I don’t know when the use of “hipster” is appropriate, but in any case, I don’t want to be associated with it. It irks me if I’m ever called that. Oh yeah–TACOS! The tacos were de-fuckin’-li-cious! A mixture of Asian cuisine with the traditional Mexican tortillas (sounds pretty hipstery huh?). I ordered one with chickpeas doused in all sorts of Indian spices and another shrimp taco which was tasty as fuck!

***

As I reached for one of my tacos, I fell into a coughing spell.  I hacked and hacked and heard a crack in my rib. Cough. Cough. Cough. CRACK. Damnit. I know that sound and feeling all too well. Yup, I fractured another rib. I say another because the year before last I fractured three when I slipped getting out of the shower. I think I fractured one last year but I’m not sure how. And I cannot recall how many ribs I’ve fractured in my lifetime.

A fractured rib from coughing is the kind of thing that is common when you have Osteogenesis Imperfecta (OI). I remember a discussion on one of the OI Facebook groups I frequently peruse and occasionally participate in. A guy asked, “what’s the weirdest fracture you’ve had”? One of the most memorable replies I read was a guy who said he fractured his skull while sneezing. I’ve had a hairline fracture on the frontal part of my skull, but at least I got that when I fell out of a car in a drunken stupor. Seems legit, right? Seems earned. But sneezing?! Damn. That beats fractured ribs any day (not that there’s a competition anywhere). Another lady from the group always posts things about her seven year old daughter who has OI. Her kid’s type of OI ranges between the severity of Type II and Type III–the type I have. Well, in one post she mentioned something that her kid had said. It was both adorable and sad. She said, “mommy I don’t get the hiccups. I get the breakups ’cause when I get the hiccups I break a rib.”

So I guess I don’t have bronchitis. I have breakitis. It’s part of the amazing package that is Ms. Mouse, a few broken bones here and there every couple of years or so. I don’t really count the ribs. Those happen all too often these days, for me at least.

What am I getting at? Well, it’s international Rare Disease Day and Osteogenesis Imperfecta aka Brittle Bone Disease aka Lobstein Syndrom is one of the rare “diseases”. I’d rather call it a condition–a rare bone condition.

I thought that this day would be celebrated every year, that it fell on the last day of February, but I just realized it falls exactly on February 29th meaning that it is only celebrated on leap years. I guess the gimmick is rare is only every so often? If you wanna know more you can visit the official website or check out the rare disease Facebook page.

****

Here’s the first post I made about Rare Disease Day back in 2012.

 

My life seems to be at a turning point again, and perhaps that’s why I find myself sitting here in front of my laptop typing away while reassessing my current path. It’s been two years since I posted anything on this here blog. I miss this haven, this little corner of my universe where I could release what stirred within me.

***

11228038_584081906329_6134297455158104125_n

There was, for a while at least, a period when my life’s pieces were falling into place, the puzzle started making a clear picture and I liked the mosaic of colors surrounding me. I had a job working at a community college. I had a boyfriend who I’ll cal CB. That developed into a stable and serious relationship–until it ended two years in of course, but more on that later. I also began to develop a relationship with my brother. I was still in therapy which was consistent and proved to still be helpful. As a result, I was fighting less with my aging father whom I depended on so much (and still do to an extent).

In sum, my life was filling up quickly. I was stuck with so much to do that I simply wasn’t able to sit down to write. And that was fine. I was ok with that. Otherwise, I would’ve made the time.

This isn’t to say I still didn’t deal with what we’ll call borderline symptoms or just the everyday struggles life brings us. This doesn’t mean that the Pretty Little Demons didn’t make an appearance every so often. Not at all. It doesn’t mean that I had a few minor crisis moments. I had my ups and downs, but none like the previous years. Depression would come and stare at me from time to time, but I was able to stare back and roll away. I was able to walk away from most things that weren’t allowing me to have peace. Hey! No suicide attempts at least. Ha!

Work had its moments. The boyfriend and I had our moments. My old cranky dad and I had our moments, my bro and I still had our fights and so on. Since I last posted, I broke some more bones, had a series of three surgeries, won a TV award, bought a new ukulele, became the neighborhood crazy cat lady, broke up with my boyfriend, quit my job and am now in a new, promising romantic relationship…

******

What the hell am I getting at? Mouse! Wake up. Wait… Oh yeah. I am now more resolved than ever to continue my writing. I had a great conversation with a friend a few days ago and the urge to speak up is rising again. It has been rising in the last two years since I left the blogosphere. But now I feel its pull. The words are present. I also have more time since I’m technically still an unemployed mouse.

Oh sweet moments of life come and go. These last two years have been full of them. The sweet moments continue between the painful ones as I know they will. I know. Asi es la vida.

Well, sleep is beckoning me. More later.

Mouse Love

Mouse tries to shoot Cupid

© MMM/PAZ 2014

****

Maybe I didn’t say that right.

Yeah, it didn’t come out right. I think I meant to say, “FUCK YEAH CUPID!”

So I’m sorry Cupid. Sorry.

I just…uugh… old habits die hard. You know? Listen. Listen, I never hated you, really. I just grew up bitter about the whole thing, you know? Being “in love” is really weird. It’s weird like I’m having an out of body experience, like I’m having one of those dereealization moments continually. Yeah, those who have postraumatic stress know derealization well enough.

See, I never liked Valentine’s Day and, well, today is that so-called day. BLEEEUUUUGH. AT LEAST in Colombia, my birthplace, we call this day El Día del Amor y la Amistad (Day of Love and Friendship) and we celebrate it sometime in September… I think. That’s more fitting to my taste and beliefs and whatnot.

Anyway, shit I don’t mean to get off course. See, I’m not sure if you had anything to do with it or not Sir Cupid, but either way, this “falling in love” thing is actually happening. It happened with Monkey Man, but that was chaotic–falling in and out and in and out all while wanting to blow my brains out.

****

I rejected it. THIS. BEING. “IN LOVE.”  I rejected it so much and nearly sabotaged any possibility of giving “love” a chance when it came around the corner last August.

I did.

But… I was in therapy! I AM in therapy. And shit does that help.

Fuck Valentines! Happy Day of Love and Friendship everyone.

And HAPPY FULL MOON! I love you. So so high, so full and yellow and bright…

Mouse Love

I Dreams In Colors

July 28, 2013

Hello?

Hello… hello …hellooooooooooooo.

I’m still here. Yessuh.

Is anyone still here?

Hello?

********

I promise I haven’t been in a coma and I’m not dead yet (neither is Dotty FYI). Where have I been? What have I been doing?

Well, obviously I’m not blogging. It’s been so long since I’ve blogged that I forgot my password a few weeks ago! (Yes I still log in to read some of your blogs occasionally). Anyway, I PANICKED! When does P not panic you may ask… Well, fuck, I didn’t NOT panic the day I logged in and couldn’t remember my password–had to go through the cumbersome ordeal of resetting my password and all.

Fortunately enough, I have a bank account now and I used the bank account password as my new WP password.

Fuck, where was I going?

Oh yeah, it’s 3am and the weekend. I’ve spent a lot of my time working lately, not just AT WORK, but even at home. Call me busy bee, or busy P or whatnot.

So, on my time off, I’ve been drawing again instead of blogging. These last couple of weeks I’ve been slacking off on the daily sketches. I was lying here, trying to get myself to bed, just puffing up my pillows, when I decided to doodle Little Luna from memory.

Maybe I’ll post some of the sketches I did last month and the one before and the one before that. I’ve just got too much to say and not enough time. Some not-so-nice things and some very, very nice things.

I’ve got a new “art” blog going, though I haven’t been updating on that one either. And I’m working on my website. Still in therapy, still swimming (even though I had to stop for a month).

I guess you could say I’m fairing well, mostly.

Night night.

Mouse love

Luna Sketch

“I dreams in color”
pen and ink © paz 2013

It’s almost the end of the third month into 2013. I blogged for mental health all of last year. No, no. I BEGGED for mental health all of last year. And I never pledged the pledge but I walked the walk or whatever.

My fellow Canvas bloggies have established a pledging that connects people with the mental-health blogging community. This blog has been a reflection of my personal journey in the last year and a half. My mental health has improved drastically since then. No drastically sounds too negative. It has improved INCREDIBLY.

****

I am at a point now where I’m not having to fight off suicidal ideations, thoughts and urges damn near every hour of everyday. I am not constantly cryin’ or having panic attacks all the time. Since the start of this blog I lost someone dear, had a ton of medical issues, and made a suicide attempt. Then I found out that my Ex-Young therapist had diagnosed me with Borderline Personality Disorder, my therapist left (that was just before the suicide attempt) and in June of 2012, I finally got back in therapy and tried different medications.

I’m still going to therapy once a week, mostly. It’s on Fridays these days. No more Thursday therapy ’cause I’m working and Brunet Young changed her schedule. Therapy has been a major lifeline, so has this blog (as I’ve mentioned dozens of times before) and my swimming. I’m still swimming despite all the shit thrown at me. I’m fortunate that my mom is still working at the gym and I’m able to go and release my demons for free, for a bit at least.

Of course I still struggle. Life is a struggle and for those with mental health issues, that struggle becomes unbearable, so painful that it kills. It is another kind of struggle in itself. But I have accomplished many of my “goals for therapy” and am still working on others.

My “stability” has settle some.

****

I have a bit more clarity in my life now and feeling a sense of direction, despite my many changes in course. There are so many challenges, so much more to endure and enjoy. I don’t know where I’m at with this blog. I’ve considered retiring it many times (as a “borderline” I’ll drastically change my mind from one minute to the next ha). But I think I’m giving it a go for a bit longer.

I’m continuing my pledge to write for mental health, to shout out, to show that we are not alone in this.

Please visit my Canvas family at A Canvas of the Minds. It’s a great little blog of mental health bloggers and shenanigans!

Oh oh. And I ALMOST forgot. Thank you Laura/Soul Survivor for pledging me this year. You can find her blog, Bipolar for Life by clicking the link.

Blog for Mental Health 2013

Blog for Mental Health 2013

Biometrics Are IN!

November 27, 2012

BOOYAH!

They are in!

My fuckin’ FABULOUS finger prints are in! My hand prints, finger prints and a picture of my geeky face in a blue long-sleeve, corduroy, polo-style shirt have been submitted into the gubernatorial vortex.

WHEW! It. Is. Done.

********

I haven’t been updating much on the immigration situation because my focus was on getting stable enough to function and get all the paperwork in. In case you’re new and are just now reading, I am an immigrant, an undocumented immigrant to say the very least. I’ve lived in Texas since I was five years old, roughly twenty-two years, but who’s counting right? *cough*

Back in June, President Obama made a sly move to get a head start in the 2012 elections–he signed an executive order for DACA (deferred action for childhood arrivals) meaning that, a) undocumented aka “illegal” immigrants who came to the U.S. prior to the age of sixteen would be deferred/protected by law from deportation proceedings and, b) they would, by discretionary case, receive a work permit so they (I) can work legally in the United States.

I currently cannot work “legally”. It is a difficult situation to be in as I mentioned in my posts “P Is in SHOCK! UTTER FUCKIN’ SHOCK!” and “P Is in SHOCK! UTTER FUCKIN’ SHOCK! …. But then remembers…”

Most of my friends and acquaintances who are in the same boat either work as waiters, house keepers (like my mother did), janitors (like my father did), construction or farm worker etc.–all jobs I cannot do in a wheelchair. My only options, out of desperation, were to try and freelance. But being mental and having severe anxiety on top of transportation issues makes freelancing extremely difficult. Besides, I needed more discipline.

Since I graduated college in May of 2011, my freelance jobs have added to nearly nothing. I tried websites like e-lance and all this other shit I can’t remember. I spend hours on those sites, touching up my resumé, putting up samples of my work, only to find that at the end of the process, I was always asked for a Social Security number which I obviously do not have.

It became another brick added to the weight of the depression that eventually knocked me down in May. But then, alas, June came with the news of Obama’s signature. I’m not an Obamacrat, I’ll tell you straight up. I’m with the rebel alliance and Jedi nights, not the empire. Besides, Obama had promised several activist groups (some of which I was part of) that he would sign this YEARS ago, but as a true politician, he did not until this election year.

Anywho, I’m not goin’ into my political or social ideals in detail since that is not the focus of my blog. I established at least that from the beginningWhat I do want to share is MY STORY.

********

In mid-October I received such wonderful birthday presents!

I got some stretchy pants from my mama, a poem from Angel; I got to see Fiona Apple LIVE with my bro who bought the tickets last-minute; I got a beautiful painting of Mermaid P mailed to moi from Le Sailor–LOOK HERE and I got the DACA application completed and mailed out. That to me was a wonderful gift. They all were.

In April, just before my suck-ass and shameful death attempt, when I thought I couldn’t fall further into depression, I got hooked up with a “job” and felt excitement followed by failure crushing me with the culmination of the second day of work, the day I got fired. I was only an intern, hence the legalities not being clear up and therefore they were not strict in mu application. That’s why I wasn’t asked for my SSI number. Plus, Mansie practically got me that job, a job that only lasted two days.

****

Sixty days after Obama’s June executive order, the DACA law went into effect. To cut my rambling a little short, I have had a long process applying for DACA since September, but I finally had my biometrics appointment today!

The biometrics proceeding is basically when USCIS, the Immigration and Citizenship Services department calls you in to take a photo of you, mark your fingerprints and so on, you know, Big Brother type shit . The dude who fingerprinted me was wearing blue latex gloves like he was about to give me an enema. I ranted on my MsMouse Facebook as follows (note the terrible grammar ’cause I was on a not-so-smartphone that kept auto-correcting me in my agitated state):

My rant for today: It’s so hard having to depend on my dad for SO much! I’m grateful that he’s here, but he’s extremely overbearing and has become more stubborn with age (he’s nearly 70). The biometrics appointment went well even though my dad and I got into an arguedment on the way to the US immigration dept office. It went super fast. Yaaaay!

But fuck anyone who thinks I, or anyone like me should be deported. Twenty two ducking years for this and I’ll still as a non-legal resident, only in immigrant with DACA and work permit. At least ill have that thought. And I can’t wait to finally have a job and a little more freedom! Wooohoo.Fuck you govt for playing with our lives! For controlling my live like a piece in a board game!End rant.

********
And that is that! I’m on my way to being more of an adult. I feel as though my entire life I haven’t been given room to grow, to spread out and show my inner beauty. This is why I feel so child-like. It’s not a “bad” thing to be child-like, but what I mean is, I’ve always felt restricted like a child. I’ve felt things that should be entitled to me weren’t. I’m an angry little mouse on a tiny, albeit heavy, leash and the cheese is only a foot away. (Godamn I love cheese!)
****
Hopefully in a month’s time, I’ll be receiving a social security number along with my work permit! Nope guys, no green card or “legal status” yet. I’ll still technically be an “illegal,” only an “illegal” who can work “legally” (I prefer undocumented).
And ain’t that an oxymoron? That’s politics for ya…
Here’s a little sketch I did on my not-so-smart-smartphone that my bro’s sweet girlfriend gave me before my surgery!
Anyone know of any good and cheap/free sketching apps for Andriod? This one isn’t too great. But I like that you can’t be precise; it makes me less perfectionistic  less critical and quicker. heheh. The scribble at the right surrounding the MsMouse is supposed to say “ILLEGAL”. Try and figure out which part of the tail is the letter G and/or A.
Mouse love

ILLEGAL MsMouse
2012 (c) paz
I am still undocumented aka “illegal”

Sexy Surgery Gone RIGHT!

November 18, 2012

Oh yes, it was a successful surgery and very sexy indeed.

The lovely Sara Draws brought this sexiness to my attention. This was the COMPLETE OPPOSITE of the not-so-sexy surgery gone wrong two years ago.

****

Tomorrow will complete a week since my jaw surgery. I have therapy with Brunet Young at eleven then have to go to the hospital, which is fortunately nearby, for my follow-up on the surgery.

Maaaan, I just can’t believe how well it went! I keep gloating about it. In fact, on Wednesday I believe it was, I started crying uncontrollably in the shower. I realized the tears were tears of relief–purifying tears as a dear friend says.

****

It went something like this:

I panicked Thursday and called my therapist, Brunet Young. Cried Sunday. Woke up Monday to face what I had to face on my face. I had to pee in a cup for a pregnancy test, put on robes that were four times my length and three times my width and put on my cap. All I could think of was how horrible it was last time. How I woke up with lips so swollen that they blocked my nostrils; how they told me my jaw had split in two; how I’d had a plate inserted to hold it together, a plate which was later found misplaced, sticking out of my skin; how my mouth was wired shut for four months, and how it hurt so much for the last two years, ugh… It all came back and I tried my best not to panic.

One of the docs slipped an IV into my vein and I got drowsy. But I guess I was so nervous that I didn’t fall asleep. They rolled me  into the operating room and there, with the oxygen mask, I finally closed my eyes.

*****

Young male doctors caressed my face then made a small incision in my outer cheek and a larger one inside my jaw. They then unscrewed the screwed-up screws.

“P, P” a voice near my ear said, “Everything went fine.”

I faintly smiled and with hazy eyes and blurred vision, I moaned, “Man, I had the strangest dream.”

“Really? A lot of patients get that from anesthesia. What was it about?”

“I have no idea.”

And I fell back into sleep.

I lied with blood on my hair and dried flakes of blood on my neck while a cute bearded nurse-boy asked if I wanted a suction tube in my mouth.

“Oh yes, yes, please” I replied in short breathless mumbles as he inserted it in my mouth and I sucked.

Yep. The surgery was soooo hot!

I now have hopes that my face will go back the way it was two and a half years ago, before all this mess. Or that the pain will go away at least. I know that the Bell’s Palsy has affected my left side which never fully recovered, but I’m okay with that now, really. I’m ok with my face not being symmetrical now.

My face looks good as new. And it’s been less than a week! It still hurts, but surprisingly this pain is much, much more tolerable than the pain I had with the plate BEFORE the surgery (this second operation, not the first).

I know it will heal this time because there’s no broken bone, no obstruction, no metal sticking out the skin to prevent the wound from closing properly.

I just have hope.

********

Hope is the thing with feathers,

That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all.
~Emily Dickinson

JAW(S)urgery! AAAAAAaah

November 11, 2012

Insert Jaws theme song.

********

I find it funny (in a dark kind of way) that a few months ago I tried to snuff myself. Today that seems remote. BUT… I’m having surgery tomorrow. It’s one of those, “oh, I’ll make a long blog post about it some day” but then never get to it kind of things.

****

I think I’m going to die, not because of the surgery, but rather because I fear my rage will exceed the capacity of my heart and I will thus have a cardiac arrest, or an aneurysm or some kind of… Ugh, I will not indulge these thoughts.

Tomorrow, a plate will be removed from my lower jaw. It has five screws. See.

****

my jaw

Yep, that’s my jaw. See the plate on the left (your right) lower mandible? It has five fuckin’ screws. See them? And see my nose ring!?

This is partly the reason why I’ve been having so much pain in my face/jaw for the last two years. That and the nerve damage ’cause by the procedure, oh and the fact that it is still sticking out in the back of my throat–they didn’t seal it properly. Yep. Also, I had the worst episode of Bell’s Palsy on that side.

Turns out that when I –it’s a long story. Trust me, I’ll get to it someday, a day that is not today.

Turns out that when I had a cyst and the back-most molar tooth removed, my jaw was fractured. I have brittle bones/Osteogenesis or OI as I’ve mentioned before. They knew this but probably had no experience working on someone like me.

****

It was supposed to be a simple day surgery. You know, minor operation, go home same day. But nope, I woke up in the ICU (intensive care unit). And I woke up looking like THIS GUY:

Alright, I didn’t look EXACTLY like ‘ole Sloth here, but I did look like his sister–if he had one. It sucked. My mouth was wired shut for four months. I had what they call “poor man’s braces” to keep the wires on and they tore at my gums. I only ate liquids and soups my dad made for me. I couldn’t look at my face in the mirror for nearly six months. And well, the pain. The pain. The pain.

Hopefully tomorrow much of this pain will be relieved once the damn titanium plate is out of my jaw.

I know you’re probably wondering, “But P, why didn’t you tell us before?!” And I know I’ve been neglecting this blog and your blogs, but that’s because so many things are changing. It is what it is. This blog has meant so much to me and your support has kept me through this year.

I barely found out about the surgery on Thursday when I had my doc appointment (that’s when I took the photos above). I had hoped to schedule it ASAP but I didn’t expect for them to schedule so soon. MONDAY! I’ve put this off long enough though and I’m going through with it!

My therapist Brunet Young has helped me prepare for this. I had a panic attack on Thursday and earlier today but I’m good now. And I’ll most def’ appreciate the support!

Oh and my family was such a HUGE support today. Bro came with his girlfriend and we watched Children of Men (one of Monkey Man’s favorite films). Bro’s girlfriend, N, brought me donuts and some soft slippers! So that has eased much of the anxiety. That and the fact that I took a Clonazepam and Tramadol earlier.

I gotta be up at 5am. Night.

Mouse Love