Positive Affirmations 2

August 18, 2013

****

I feel frantic tonight, as I have the last few nights this week. Tonight, well, I don’t know quite how to explain this feeling. It’s like the PLDs (Pretty Little Demons) came back from vacation, hung over and strung out on cocaine, and are throwing a party in my honor. What am I trying to fuckin’ say…

Well, shit… I’m frantic but not angry. I’m excited; I’m thrilled with life and can’t wait for the next second to come. Everything is much to slow or much too fast. I’m over stimulated. I want it to speed up to my level. Confidence has soared and roared. I’m a social butterfly, not a wallflower. I am everyone–everyone is ME. Loud and outspoken, but agreeable to. I start a fight, but then I’ll make the peace. Pacify me and i’ll pacify you.

But an a storm of instability seems to approach. I hope I’m wrong. I HOPE THE WEATHER MAN IS WRONG!

That’s how I feel, only I can’t seem to pacify myself at night. In the days, yes. Nights, not so much. I’m caught in a tangle of thoughts.

********

This morning I woke up screaming. I was yelling at my mother in a dream, though I don’t know or remember what the dream was about or what I said to her. All I know is my own voice woke me. It’s odd. It it happens a lot to me; it happens more when I’m frantic, or hypomanic or whatever.

****

Friday night was terrible. I couldn’t sleep. Thoughts were racing. My body wanted rest but my brain was running a marathon. I wrote yet another ramble on my iPhone (note the bad grammar). You can’t write at light-speed while tapping tiny keys on a little screen.

Rambles ©paz 2013

Rambles ©paz 2013

I jump from tangent to tangent. And I’m anxious. These days there’s so much anxiety that is coursing through my body that my hands are shaky again.

****

I went from writing on my phone to writing on my sketchbook. I don’t know when I finally fell asleep.

But here’s more of what I wrote. I’ll call them my positive affirmations, for now.

© paz 2013

© paz 2013

Positive Affirmations

August 16, 2013

iphone rambles ©paz 2013

iphone rambles ©paz 2013

********

My 5 a.m. rambles from last night’s hypomanic induced sleeplessness.

Life Line

August 2, 2012

I’m too tired to write anything today. But I did want to share this. I think I’m going to start a new series, “P’s Pool Stories” What do you think? Does that sound cheesy, but something you may want to read? Yay? Nay?

****

I was scheduled to have an interview with a reporter today about the Deferred Action/Dream Act that was sent out as an executive order by president Obama. I guess she wanted to interview me about it and for me to share my personal story. As usual these last two weeks, I only slept about four and a half hours. I was so nervous/anxious. I’d been trembling all morning. But that’s already been happening anyway as you may know.  I’m not going to get into details, but basically she canceled on me.

Thankfully, today is one of my swimming days. It has been one of my lifelines for the last month and a half or so. Sucks my mom works as a janitor there and is starting to get tired of her supervisor who keeps telling her to “scrub harder here and scrub harder there” and “you missed a spot”. My mom is a clean freak, so I’m sure she’s doing her job well, he’s just buggin’. On the plus side, she has a job! It’s not something we could’ve said six months ago. And the fact that she works there is the only reason I’m able to go swimming in the first place.

Money issues? Meh.

I’m at ease at the moment and will savor this bit of strange calm (I did take a Clonazepam for the interview though, so that’s one reason why).

And I’m buff! heheh. Or as my brother says, “Damn you’re shredded shorty!” I think I’m the fittest I’ve ever been in my life, though not mentally fit yet. I mean, I am mentally strong despite the instability and my lack of self-esteem and all the other bullshit that comes with mental problems.

I’ve been fit before and I’ve also been overweight as well as crack-head skinny. My weight fluctuates to extremes like my moods. As I mentioned in Termination of Therapy and a Secret Diagnosis of BPD, my weight has fluctuated A LOT throughout my life, and I have serious body image issues that I have slowly been working out the last three years. And now I’m turning into one of those douchey muscle guys that always stand in front of the mirror flexing and kissing their pecks.

Oh, snap, I think I did just write. heheh. My favorite lane is the one on the far left by the windows. 🙂

********

Just keep swimming. It’s hardly ever this empty.
(taken with  my semi-crappy Nokia camera phone) I’m doing an average of 8 to 14 laps. 48 seconds  a lap (2way) was my latest timing. And I don’t know why the water looks so cloudy here.

As I mentioned in the previous post, I started therapy again three weeks ago. I’m seeing her on Wednesdays. This Wednesday will be my fourth session.

********

The second session I had with Brunet Young was just as productive as the first, but the third surprised me. Did I actually say all that? Yes, yes you did P. At ‘a girl!

It’s a good thing when you know what you’re getting yourself into when starting therapy. The same could not be said when I first went to see a counselor after my monumental mental meltdown in 2008. I had no idea what to expect then; I even walked out, or rolled out, of a therapist’s office in frustration in 2009. But this time… I have goals this time!

I came into therapy just as desperate, but more ready than ever. I know my borderline personality disorder (BPD) diagnosis, I’m more sure of the bipolar tendencies if the psychiatrist is right, and I’ve learned some basic dialectical behavioral skills training from Ex-Young Therapist as well as core training in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).

I’m barely driving out of hell, but I have a tank full of gas, me thinks. That’s hope for ya.

********

On the second session, much like the first, we went over major areas of my life that need working on. I asked Brunet Young if she could tell me what it was she remembered about my history from the consultation team so I could fill in the rest as best I could.

I told her things like, “the overdose from two months ago was not my first, but definitely the worst” and “I have a history of abuse, though my views on it change. I mean, you have to understand our culture is different. But, it’s a fine line no?” I told her about my mother’s past suicidal tendencies, her upbringing, her sister’s (my aunt’s) suicide and so on. She already knew about my immigration situation, my medical problems, my tendency toward isolation, and my body image issues, so I didn’t have to go into that with her.

We talked a lot about how Monkey Man’s recent and sudden death has affected me, how I  was drugged up with him much of the time we were together (off and on), but how I always tried to get him to stop drinking. We discussed ways in which I can work up my courage to call his step-mom and/or dad to ask about the toxicology report results again.

On and on we went. I couldn’t believe myself.

Towards the end of the session, she did something I was so thankful for. She asked me to write a list of issues I thought I hadn’t had a chance to go over with Ex-Young Therapist.

********

My dad had taken me that second day and, on the way out, he said something that bothered me a little.

“She’s not good like the Ex-Young Therapist is she?”

“Why?” I asked.

“Well, she didn’t say hi to me as kindly as the other one.”

After the initial frustration this remark induced, a light bulb lit up in my head! Aha! I have to discuss this with Brunet Young, not this in particular, but my dad. I have to discuss how I think some of my black and white thinking patterns about myself lead back to his black and white thinking. I didn’t get into depth discussing my dad much with Ex-Young Therapist. I did a little, but more toward the end, or just when issues arose. In fact, because we focused so much on me learning DBT skills,  the therapy process and focus remained on present problems and not past, “unresolved” problems.

********

Last Wednesday, I decided to take the bus for our third session. It was better for all of us. My dad didn’t have gas money and I wanted the liberty of no off-handed comments.

It was an hour and a half bus ride; I have to take two buses and the MetroRail downtown but that’s a hell of a lot better than waiting on ole MetroLift’s shifty ass.

I arrived on time and with my homework assignment completed.

Here is my list of “past problems” I didn’t get to discuss with Ex-Young Therapist. And I added a bonus for Brunet Young. I added some therapy goals–totally my idea.

****

I’m on a roll. I’m telling you. Here’s what I wrote down for her:

Goals for Therapy

*Manage Panic attacks and chronic pain

*Reduce suicidal and self-injurious impulses/actions/urges and manage the thoughts better. (No more overdosing!)

*Increase support network
-> continue rebuilding relationship with brother
-> get into that DBT group at BT (keep calling! don’t desist!)
-> get involved again in community organizing/activist orgs.

****

* Interpersonal effectiveness -> review
* Distress tolerance -> review and continue practice!
* Develope a more consistent daily ruitine to include: writing/blogging, sketching, watching Lynda.com tutorials, planing, swimming/yoga, playing ukulele again, and getting a job after filing the immigration papers!
-> remember to do one thing at a time
-> break down into smaller chunks
-> plan ways to reduce stressful situations, not increase or worsen them

* Continue healthy eating / no binging
* Work on self-validation
* Work on healthier ways to deal with complicated grief
-> Monkey Man L’s death and guilt about death
-> hearing loss

* Ask about/look into other methods such as IFS (Internal Family Systems) and Schema Mode therapies.

****

Past Problems

* Mother’s verbal and physical abuse (I really hate the way I wrote this one because, honestly, I feel closer to my mother than my father and I love them both very much, even when they piss me off. And my mom’s changed for the better after getting help herself.)

* Dad’s continued invalidation and overbearing tendencies (not to mention the fact that I still have to depend on him financially)

* Medical Trauma (e.g. still need to deal with jaw incident and set up a date for surgery, continued nerve pain, decreased bone density, past accidents that led to ER, prolonged stays at hospital during childhood; loads of surgeries)

* Sexuality and validation issues (e.g. what happened with Dusty and Emily)

*Repetetive compulsion with alcohol and drugs (mainly alcohol and self-harm)

* Maladaptive core beliefs (e.g. I am not a “good” person, I’m “a burden,” etc.)

********

Yep, so that’s what I have so far. We went over this list I wrote, which she said was very good. I think it’s a good starting point too. And since I was able to write it out, it helped when she asked to explain what I meant by “sexuality and validation issues”. That’s when I brought up Sir Dusty and a lot of other things I may or may not mention here. Man, it was hard work!

Fuck my bleeding ears! I’m trying to stay positive. I really am. I’m relying on my inner wisdom.

And these days, I’m maintaining a better outlook more than not, which is the complete opposite of what could be said a month and half ago. I feel funny though, and not previous-post funny. The anxiety has just been maddening.

On Friday night, when I hung out with my brother, I ended up staying over the night. Well, around 4am (as usual these days), I woke up with chest pain, feeling like I was having a heart attack. You’re not having a heart attack P. This is just anxiety. I was nauseated, felt the same old prickly feeling in my toes and hands and was shivering too. So I woke up my brother and asked him for another blanket. I told him what I felt and he agreed about the anxiety.

Earlier Friday, I was eating lunch with my dad at the kitchen table. We had arepas and queso and coffee. I hadn’t even touched my coffee yet and my hands were trembling. (I swear, I’ve been cutting back substantially on the coffee.)

“Your hands are shaking really bad. Why are they shaking like that?” he asked.

“I think I’m just having a lot of anxiety right now.” I lowered my head.

“About what?”

“I don’t know. It’s a lot of things, I guess.”

“It looks as if you had Parkinson’s”

Ah my dad, good ole papi. Gotta love the way he throws in something that sounds both amusing and insulting or hurtful (to me) without even meaning to–but sometimes meaning to. I’d made a joke about looking like Michael J. Fox during an interview on my very second (or third) post here! So, yes, this isn’t new. But now it’s noticeable to my dad even?

Today, right now, I’m feeling the same way. I hope it passes soon. I hope typing will at least keep me at ease a little while.

********

I wonder if it’s the medication that’s making it worse. Almost every morning it’s the same.

At the end of May, a few weeks after the incident, I saw the psychiatrist. She had the Fluoxetine/Prozac upped. I keep wondering, how did I get here? Accepting drugs from a psych? For me, taking “medication” is last, last, last resort.

I saw her again this past Thursday. She said something that both surprised and didn’t surprise me.

“I’m thinking… you seem to have bipolar, bipolar two,” she said midway through our appointment. These appointments, by the way, are actually forty-five minutes long. Ok. Well, at the moment, labels don’t matter to me much. I just need all the help I can get. I don’t want another incident to occur, for the sake of those around me at least. But in part, for my sake too. And that’s a good thing! It means I’m seeing light at the end of the tunnel, despite the way I’m feeling.

Long story short, she prescribed Lamotrigine/Lamictal. I haven’t gotten it yet. I barely ran out of Tegretol last week and didn’t bother to get it filled. Well, there’s was more to it than that. There was the money issue. It’s rough right now. I just wish I could handle things better, without getting so frantic, so worked up inside… Swimming is the only time I don’t feel like I’m drowning!

And now I’m to try yet another drug?

I don’t know. I just don’t know…

********

But therapy. Right!

I finally got in three weeks ago. The very first week, we covered a lot.

She’s also a young brunet like Ex-Young Therapist, but it’s a university, so what was I expecting, an old student? Anyway, we covered basics, like what I did with my Ex-Young Therapist, what worked, what didn’t work. Turns out this new therapist (I’m going to call her Brunet Young) worked in a team with Ex-Young Therapist, so she already knew a little bit about me. A consultation team is part of dialectical behavioral therapy (DBT).

After going over some of the basics, like major problems in my life, she mentioned the overdose incident from early May. Has it been two and a half months already?

****

“In the intake interview, you mentioned that you didn’t consider the overdose a suicide attempt. Why is that?” Brunet Young asks.

“Um… I’m not sure,” I reply. I stammer around and stutter for a little while. “Maybe it’s because I have a hard time seeing it as that. But also, I think I was gambling. I was playing Russian roulette. I told myself that if I died that night, then fine, but if I didn’t, I would have to just try a lot harder. I mean, I would’ve definitely taken the entire bottle had I wanted it to be more sure…a more definite thing.”

“How much did you take?”

“About eight painkillers and two sleeping pills.”

“And you were ok with the fact that you might’ve died as a result?”

“Yes, I was.” It’s scary to think, but at the time, I was.

“You know, from a clinical perspective, there is a distinction between suicide attempts. There’s an active suicide attempt and a passive one. What you describe is a more passive attempt.”

She made sure to emphasis that it was still considered an attempt. Or at least that’s how I heard it.

****

We then wrote up a crisis plan, which looks a little something like this.

My Plan

When I feel upset and have thoughts of hurting myself or someone else, or I feel that I am in emotional crisis, I will take the following steps:

1. My warning signs are (e.g. very self-critical, hopeless, isolation, staying in bed)

-passive thoughts of suicide increase in frequency and become clearer, more of an urge/stronger urge
-insomnia and crying spells worsen
-triggers (e.g. Monkey Man, relationships, drugs, reminders, etc) –> anger/rage
-isolating myself –> not picking up calls, curling up in bed and staring blankly, dissociating
-being upset about hearing loss; being upset on days when I’m not able to go swimming
-chronic bone pain intensifies; facial nerve pain increases

2. My reasons to live are:

– I can do a lot for others. I have potential to do a lot.
-I don’t want to hurt my family

That’s all I have for reasons right now. I used to have career plans, but that’s not strong-holding at the moment. It has to be something that you really believe, something that will grab you, will keep you from doing anything permanent–a true deterrent.  I think I need to come up with more. I told Brunet Young this and she said, “It’s alright, we’ll come up with more later.” I thought of adding “love”. Just focus on the word love, the meaning of it for me, how I’ve managed to hold on to “love” in my life. But love of what? Art? Life? Beauty? Family? How can you focus on that in a “crisis” situation when all you’re thinking about is the pain you’re in and peaceful bliss of death and non-existance?

3. Do these things to calm myself or distract myself:
-Mindfulness exercise

-say serenity prayer and Buddha refuge prayer
-If at home, call Luna, pet and cuddle with her. (The good thing about Luna is if she hears me crying, I don’t even have to call her over. She finds me. Sweetest dog ever.)
-remember “Distress Tolerance” –> follow breath, deep breathing
-self sooth –> hum a tune, splash water on face, take warm bath, play ukulele
-write, write, write

-read, read, read

-watch TV (comedy preferably)

-stretch with yoga mat
-image focus –>meditate
-progressive muscle relaxation

-review “coping card”

-take a short nap and/or break from whatever you’re doing (e.g. go out in the fresh air and walk the dogs)

4. Contact a friend or family member that I can trust:

name & number: answering service at PRSC –>that’s the university’s psychological research and services center

Also, I’ve listed my brother, mom, and maybe B and Mansie, Ryden and Eloise, although I’m having a hard time with this one. I’ll really need to work at it.

5. Call PRSC and ask to speak with my therapist

6. If it is after clinic hours (M-Th 9-8; F 9-5) and I can’t reach my therapist, call the PRSC after-hours answering service at **********

7. Call a hotline for support or assistance:
1-800-273-TALK (8255)
I also have several other local hotline numbers included here. But I don’t do hotlines. It’s not how I roll.

8. If I am unable to get help quickly enough and feel that things can’t wait, I will call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room for help.

********

The thing about the crisis plan is that I have only been able to get myself to do steps one through three, maybe four. I’m able to recognize warning signs and use methods like distress tolerance and mindfulness, but contacting a “trusted” person is difficult. That’s the thing, on Friday, I did contact my brother, but I did it after too much thinking. Also, I don’t tell him how bad I feel, I just ask him what’s up. Brunet Young said that was fine, I don’t exactly  have to tell him, especially not now if I’m not comfortable doing so. The important thing is to distract in non-harmful ways.

Another difficulty I’m having with this crisis plan is knowing the “answering service” after hours aren’t open on weekends. I’ll have to ask her about this. But even then, I’m not the type of person who would call. I think I only called Ex-Young Therapist twice or maybe three times during a “crisis situation”. And that was after two years of seeing her! One of those times was a few days after I found out about Monkey Man’s death this March.

I used to hate the idea of therapy. Sometimes I still do. Right now though, I’m just glad I finally got in again.

6.29.12

July 7, 2012

I feel the rhythm of the waves
below me releasing the core–hollow.
Pain and pleasure are purified.

The pulsating waves. My muscles tighten
and ache. My breath escapes, my toes tingle as
energy is released–rage, euphoria.
I am emptied out. I am renewed.

© paz

********

A little something I had jotted down in my notebook after swimming.

I jump into the cold water and shiver.

“Ay ma’ hoy si que esta fría,” I comb my hair back with both hands and I give my mother my black Speedo swimming cap for her to help me with.

Once it’s on, she gets up and says she’ll be back in thirty minutes. She didn’t want to go to the gym today. We’ll be picking up Isa, Elosie’s sister from her dance program for the weekend and my mom went out drinking for my bro’s birthday party last night. She’s tired. But I want to swim, so she decides to go begrudgingly and I’m grateful. I haven’t had a chance to swim since Wednesday.

I adjust my goggles and plunge in for a first lap.

****

I’ve just finished my forth lap and am at the edge of the lane heaving. A young man gets in the lane next to mine. The first thing I notice is he has a beard and big blue eyes. Hey, he’s kind of cute. I pretend not to notice but it’s too late.

“The water’s cold isn’t it,” he does a little jerk with his head.

“Yeah,” I nod, “it’s pretty cold, especially today. But once you get in all the way, you’re good.”

“Yeah–” he adjusts his goggles and just stands there looking at me with a big ‘ole pretty smile. I mean he has teeth and everything!

“What’s your name?”

“Paz. Yours?”

“K, nice to meet you,” he reaches out to shake my hand. I grab it. He’s shivering.

“Thank you… I mean, nice to… meet you… too,” What the hell did I just say? Thank you? P, you are silly.

“Just dive in real quick,” I tell him. This boy here is stalling. “Going in real’ quick is best way. I’m telling you. It’s so much worse when you nudge yourself in slowly. Come on,” I smile back. I’m still hanging on to the ledge. I’m so small that I can’t even touch the floor on a four-foot deep pool. I’m constantly having to tread water. By now my breath is at a normal pace and I’m noticing how anxious I start to feel. Damn it dude, quit taunting me with your beard and just get in so I can swim. This is ruining my flow! I’m getting nervous having you just smiling at me like that! Shit, I’d already managed to lower my anxiety on the third lap and now it’s back up agai…

“–but I’m a wuss.”

“It’s the only way man. One, two, three! Come on!” I call out. He calls out the numbers after me and finally goes in.

Aaaah. I can relax now.

Damn those beards always get to me.

****

I love beards!

I can’t help it. I love ’em on men. I’m not so sure I’d love ’em on women, but hell, I love ’em so much I may as well love ’em on women!

And this white boy here has a nicely trimmed golden beard!

****

I’m swimming and swimming. I do my fifth lap or is it my sixth? Damn, is that bearded fella still next to my lane? Oh yep, I can feel the water being pushed. He’s there for sure.

I’m swimming and swimming some more. I’m trying to focus on my stroke patterns, my breathing, my heartbeat, how the water feels when I do my pushes and pulls, my body’s level–all mindfulness. All of this is such good exercise on mindfulness practice from dialectical behavioral therapy.

But I’m not always so mindful.

Remember to do the S. curve in your pull like that olympic swimmer did in that YouTube video. Michael Phelps does a gorgeous dolphin kick. I wonder what he’s like in bed. Ian Thorpe’s dolphin kick is also lovely. Wonder how’s he’s in bed too. No, I think I’d go with Michael, then again… Shit, is this my eight or ninth lap? I’m getting worn. No, I gotta keep it up. Is that guy still there? Damn, I love Saturdays ’cause NO ONE’S HERE on Saturdays. But that guy’s still there! Yep, I’m feeling his waves. One, two, three, breath. One, two, three, breath. Remember your S curve on the stroke. Your arms are paddles! Even your crooked T-Rex arm! One, two, three, breath. Ohhh, wall is coming up… One…two…three…four…five…hold breath, turn, flip, push-dolphin kick–paddle, ooout. Uggggh. P, that was a horrible flip! At least you made it though; you made it. Good. Good. You made it. You’ll do better on the next run… Is that dude still there? Quit thinking about the bearded boy dammit! And damn you L! You should be here. You should be swimming! Oh, wall…

I keep swimming until my ninth or tenth lap. I’m not sure by this point. I’m worried that when I stop, the guy will be there and sure enough he is, but so is my mom.

“Mamita! Hey!” I look startled.

She looks down at me and shows me her gloves, “Se me olvido esto. Me faltan tres sets.” She’d come back for her gloves. She takes a few steps back and closes my bag which is dangling on the back of my wheelchair.

“Ok ma, entonces que, veinte minutos mas?”

“Si,” she blows a kiss and I blow one back.

Oh yeah, the dude. Yep, he’s still there. Fuck it, I’m going for another lap.

****

I think I just did my eleventh lap, but I’m not sure since I lost track on my sixth, or was it my eight? It was somewhere around there. I usually loose track on the eighth but today a bearded boy is swimming next to me.

I’m hanging on the ledge. I’m panting out of breath. He arrives shortly after, also panting. I’m panting harder. He’s panting harder and heavier still. I think I let out a little moan, but it may have been a cough. And I can’t help thinking how sexual all this heavy breathing seems.

“Don’t make me look bad P.”

“Oh,” I chuckle, “How? Was I going quick?”

“Yeah,” He nods vigorously, “I was noticing that you even do the flip turns!”

“Oh,” I chuckle again, “Yeah, I’ve just started learning how to do those. I tend to do them lop-sided though, but oh well, I get it done somehow.” I think it’s because of my scoliosis.

“Well, you still make me look bad. I wouldn’t know about the turns.”

“Aren’t you a swimmer?” Stupid question P, of course he’s not a swimmer! Look at him!

“No, I try to be,” he laughs.

“My best friend [Eloise] was a competitive swimmer in college and she taught me a few things. When you do the backstroke like I was doing, you’re supposed to do a front flip and then kick back just before you hit the wall. That way you get more momentum on your dolphin kick. And that’s how you get the best push offs, but I can’t seem to get it right half the time,” I gesture with my hand. “Oh here, I’ll show you.”

What the fuck P? Why are you going to show him? Are you trying to show off?  You’re gonna look stupid! Aarggggh. 

I plunge myself back and start talking about how you’re supposed to measure how many strokes you do before you hit the wall but since there are no flags in this natatorium here to signal the wall, “I have to guesstimate” I gurgle a little as I talk. “So when I guesstimate about right here–maybe five strokes or so–I flip…”

I’m underwater thinking what a fuckin’ idiot I am. He didn’t ask me to show him. What the fuck are you doing P, seriously? Your flips are terrible! If you’re trying to flirt, this is NOT PRETTY!

“Yeah, that was a pretty bad flip,” I say as soon as I resurface. I’m trying not to cough, so I laugh instead. I’m trying not to laugh so I cough. I feel like such a child.

“It’s hard to do.”

“So you been coming here a while?” I think of the word cum. heheh. I also start to have sexual images in my head.

“No, I just started. I used to go the University _______ pool at the Rec Center but it was even colder there since the swimmers train,” he starts leaning on to his side to face me directly.

“Oh, yeah?! I went there! Yeah, it’s funny ’cause I always told myself I’d go swimming but I never did. Then when I graduated, I actually did finally go thinking I’d have alumni privileges and they said–”

“–you have to pay,” he interjects.

“Yeah, exactly, you have to pay. That sucks. So what’d you take at Uni… I mean what’d you major in?”

“Mechanical engineering,” he replies. Yep, he’s got the nerdy look alright. Definitely a nerdy white boy. A cute, nerdy white boy with a beard! “What about you?”

“Media production,” I reply a little too quick.

“Oh yeah?! My friend did that. He’s teaching music now.”

He tells me more about his musician friend and I tell him that I don’t think I ever knew or met his friend. It’s such a big campus, even if we were in the same program, chances are we never met. And then I tell him that I play the piano, that I had done a two-year audio recording/engineering and music program before going to the University ______.

“But I haven’t played the piano in about three years. I’ve picked up the ukulele though, recently. Since I’m so small, it seems perfect for me.”

By now, this boy’s eyes are lighting up. I can tell. But then again, I’m unsure. Maybe it’s just me. Maybe I want them to light up. And then one of the critical Pretty Little Demons starts buggin’: What in the hell do you think you’re doing? Monkey Man just died! You’re fuckin’ awful! Good for nothin’! Are you trying to flirt? hahah. You don’t even know how to flirt! Look at you! Look at you! You’re pathetic. You and your flips. Showing off? HA. You and your crooked arm and your crooked smile. Don’t let him see those scars on your arms, yeah, the fresh ones from last Saturday.

But, but… Monkey Man L and I weren’t together for the last six months before his death… We were in another one of our separation phases, sort of… But I wasn’t with Monkey Man at the time, and, why do… I don’t wanna… Ugh… I’m not trying to… I want to bang my head against the wall! I want to die!

“Yeah, you should definitely get back to playing ukulele. That would be awesome!” he smiles again. I want to touch his beard.

“Yeah. I will. I mean, I plan to, well, I’m a go to the hot tub, I’m kinda… as you can see, I’m… freezing now… Um, good luck on your job applications and congrats on graduating. Was really nice meeting you,” I head for the stairs.

When I’m on the stairs stretching or trying to or pretending to, he says “You forgot your goggles.” Great. He crosses over to the lane I was just in and gets them for me.

“Thank you,” I smile. I’m glad I can smile again literally–after the bell’s palsy– and metaphorically after so many tears.”These are getting on my nerves anyway. Water keeps getting in. Thank you.”

“It was nice meeting you.”

“You too,” I reply… Only I think I say something else because I was nervous, cold and shivering.

“I’m going to do two more laps and I’ll say by on my way out.”

“Ok, sounds good,” I get up and get on my chair. I stroll myself on over to the hot tub area. I get in. Aaaaah, warmness. About eight or ten minutes later, he calls out and says bye. I want to tell him I’m hard of hearing but I don’t.

“Alright, bye! Nice meeting you! Take care!” I wave.

Well, I kinda rushed that didn’t I?

He waves and walks out. I crouch back in the hot tub and wait for my mom to return.

fuck buddy

This one made me laugh. Terrible. I was thinking about this yesterday after the fam ate dinner for my bro’s birthday and his girlfriend celebrated decided to celebrate at this place called “Drink Houston”. Yeah, I went to the dinner but not to Drink Houston. Avoiding the loud, alcoholic places right now. But I wondered if I missed out on meeting anyone there, ahem, read the caption. Well, I guess I did meet someone today. And I didn’t have to get wasted to act a fool. Nope, not at the gym’s pool!

****

Today has been good thus far. Anxiety’s the same but at least I haven’t had mad-major mood shifts.