People are complicated

I wrote an article for Medium about my childhood, even though I am afraid my parents will find it and we’ll have a shitstorm to deal with.

I got brutally honest about my childhood, in particular the emotional neglect I dealt with and all its sometimes unflattering outcomes.

Interestingly, I didn’t even realize until I was writing it that my childhood habit of lying was a form of dissociation (which is common in people who were emotionally neglected.) I also more concretely put it together that my parents accused me of lying at an age when my imagination was supposed to develop. My imagination didn’t ever develop because of their insistence that I tell the truth, which still makes it hard for me to enjoy reading fiction, for example.

And yet I don’t hate them, even though they really messed me up. I have empathy and compassion for them. I don’t know if I should have empathy and compassion for them. I know they were just repeating the script of how their own parents had raised them.

But they also didn’t seek counseling, which is on them. I don’t honestly know what to do about that.

On another note, yesterday I got together with Dylan’s girlfriend and it was really good. We legitimately enjoyed our time together.

Interestingly, though, she told me that Dylan just recently cried in front of her for the first time. Given that they’ve been together for four years, that really surprised me. And it also tells me that my husband hasn’t been a positive role model in that regard. Although we’ve always told the kids there was nothing wrong with boys crying, apparently Dyl couldn’t actually let himself do it.

Part of me knows that testosterone plays a role because Adam told me that once they started estrogen, they were able to cry much more easily. So it may not be just because my husband hasn’t modeled it—it might be something he legitimately couldn’t do.

Still, I’m really hopeful that Dyl will be more in touch with his feelings and at least feel safe crying in front of his girlfriend. It’s so important to be able to feel and express your feelings.

On a totally unrelated note, J read my blog post from yesterday and said that it makes him uncomfortable to be put on a pedestal like my mom has done with him. I honestly have similar tendencies to place him there, too.

But something he pointed out is that I make him better as well. And I often find that harder to believe, probably because of my childhood. It makes me assume that there’s nothing good about me.

It’s interesting, though, to hear him say that I’m worthy in my own right and that I make him better. (I feel like he makes me better as well.) So often, I just don’t feel like it.

The narcissist (or not)

Can someone have a habit of gaslighting you without being a narcissist? I actually think this might be possible—but it doesn’t make it any better or less damaging that they’re not doing it on purpose.

I read this article about unintentional gaslighting and I think it’s what my mom does to me. I’m giving her the benefit of the doubt that it’s unintentional but I really don’t think that matters anyway. As the article says, unintentional gaslighting is still gaslighting, and it’s still really damaging to be on the receiving end of it.

My mom has this long history of denying that she has ever said certain things. And the thing is that I think she really believes that she hasn’t done anything. I used to believe her and thought my perceptions just couldn’t be trusted.

It messed me up for literal decades of my life until I realized that parents didn’t have to interact with their children that way. I unfortunately think I may have done it myself when the kids were younger.

Only Amy is old enough to remember it and I have tried really hard for at least the last 15 years not to do so. And I’ve apologized to her and she knows that I’ve been on a long journey to get better and have healthier communication patterns.

But the fact remains that I still don’t know what to do about my mom. I can’t talk to her about this at all because she’s firmly stuck in denial mode.

I’m sure it’s a trauma response on her part, which gives me some empathy toward her.

At the same time, I wonder how much I should let my empathy excuse being mistreated. Sooner or later, it seems like people should have to take responsibility for themselves. But of course, that never happens and I am pretty resigned to the fact that it’s not gonna.

If she seemed to like me and be interested in me, it might be a different matter. But she’s never seemed interested in me (or my kids, for that matter.) The only one she’s interested in is J and she’s made a lot of comments that suggest the rest of us don’t deserve him.

Yes, we did get very, very lucky to have him, no doubt. But I also believe that the kids and I DO deserve him. We are good enough people to merit having an loving and attentive husband and father.

I get it that J’s exceptional and he deserves lots of props for that. But I don’t really believe anymore that the kids and I just got really lucky. I mean, we did, but there’s always this impression given off that we’re not good enough ourselves to deserve him treating us so well. She doesn’t seem to acknowledge that as a family we all take care of each other. He’s not the only one of us who’s a good person. We all are.

To be honest, I sometimes still feel torn about whether or not I should just end contact with my mom altogether. The reason that I don’t is…well, I don’t really know the answer to that. I guess because I know I’m going to lose my husband and don’t want to lose anyone else, too.

And I guess it’s because I give her the credit of not really knowing what she’s doing and knowing that she has a lot of trauma of her own that she’s still refusing to confront. I’m too empathetic for my own damn good.

I just wish she hadn’t spent a whole lifetime convincing herself that she was broken and trying to pass on the same brokenness to me. I wish she seemed to genuinely like me and wanted to get to know me and my kids.

My kids know she’s not a normal grandma. They have friends with healthy grandparent relationships and know what it should look like.

I feel like we’re all missing out because she won’t get help.

Breaking the cycle

I’m annoyed again, or still, by my mom.

She commented that in my Medium articles, I mention a lot how miserable I was there and how much more I enjoy it where I am now.

She’s not the only one who is rubbed the wrong way by my hatred of Michigan, though I usually play it down and even recommend the state as a whole to people when they’re looking for a place to move. There are a lot of beautiful places in the state, even if (in my opinion) the city I’m from isn’t one of them.

To be honest, I don’t know what to do about this. I fully acknowledge and understand that the people I know who love it there don’t think it sucks. I don’t begrudge them their happiness and am glad for them. Truly. If anything, I’m more likely to wonder why I couldn’t love it the same way.

And certainly, there are tons and tons of people who hate it where I am now, too. I understand their hatred of it, even if I don’t share it. One man’s trash pit is another person’s paradise and all. Few of us can afford to live someplace like Hawaii which everyone defines as paradise.

But I feel this pressure to like where I’m from more than I do. I feel like when I say how miserable I was there, some people (including my mom) take it as a personal attack, as though I’m calling into question how anyone could like it there. And that’s really not my intent at all.

It’s just really, really, really not a good place for me in so many ways.

On a similar note, I’m annoyed with my mom for so many other reasons, which is why I am not going to talk to her for a while. I am beyond upset that she has no interest in growing as a person, thinking that the way she is is just fine. That too is objective but if neither of her daughters wants to talk to her and she thinks she’ll be alone and friendless for the rest of her life, I just can’t understand why she doesn’t want to try to change.

Similarly, I know she thinks I look down on her for not graduating from college, but that’s not entirely accurate. I actually don’t look down on her for not graduating from college. She was able to get by just fine without doing so and it wasn’t something she was interested in.

What I do look down on her for, though, is the fact that she didn’t support me in going to college and did nothing to help. It’s still one of my life’s greatest accomplishments and I just wish she would recognize it as such. Instead, it seems to reflect an overall lack of respect for education.

I should have been college-bound all along. I should have been nurtured. A lot of the things I’ve been through are because of their lack of being tuned into me and what was important to me. And I can’t stop feeling mad about that. It seems like such a low bar for parents and mine couldn’t overcome it. Frankly, I’m too mad to acknowledge that they were doing the best they could, just because it was so inadequate.

I’ve fought so hard to achieve more than their expectations for me and it just seems like they’re permanently unimpressed, no matter what I do. And that sucks.

I’m very strong—especially now. I am dealing with things she has never had to and she doesn’t seem to realize that it’s only luck that keeps her from being in my shoes. Honestly, I think she’d fall apart if she had to be in my shoes.

But there’s not any acknowledgement of that or any of my other successes. I am not afraid to admit that I am hands down a much better parent than she was to me, because I choose to be aware and break the cycle.

Maybe she’s intimidated. Maybe she knows that she fucked up. After all, all of my kids are thinking about me and making sure I’m taken care of, in large part because I have done the same for them. Her kids have not made any promises to take care of her, for example.

Maybe she thinks I’m a great parent and just won’t tell me so.

Either way, I feel like I have to tiptoe around her feelings, trying to balance my own happiness with hers. I don’t want my kids to feel the same way, so I have shown a great deal of interest in and respect for who they are as individuals.

One of the reasons I like living so far away from them is that I don’t feel like I’m constantly in their observation. It serves me extraordinarily well.

I just don’t think this gap between us can ever be bridged.

More writing and other thoughts

I seem to have gotten my groove back in writing for Medium, so yay for that. My most recent pieces have been curated again for further distribution, too, so I can really tell that I got it back. I just wrote one last night called American Parents are Getting It All Wrong and I’m pretty sure it will also be curated.

All I had to do to get my writing back on track was to stop sharing it with my mom. She basically proved that no, I didn’t really have the freedom to write about whatever I wanted with her blessing, despite her saying otherwise. She has proven herself unsafe, which I am disappointed but not surprised by.

Mentioning that I wrote an article about why parents should apologize to their kids—and mentioning gaslighting in particular (though not calling her out specifically) by denying that you ever said something—was not something she was able to handle.

The fact remains that she is guilty of gaslighting me in that way for my entire life. I can have a relationship with her of sorts but it will never be as close or as genuine as she thinks it is as long as she’s refusing to acknowledge that she did (and still does) that.

I have boundaries now. There’s a place where I go in my head to protect myself from her. No, she probably wouldn’t like knowing that and she thinks we’re much closer than we are.

Honestly, the way she reacted to that and the effect it had on me brought up a lot of the old really angry feelings I used to have towards her. Now, I deal with them in a different way by immediately distancing myself from her emotionally so they don’t completely derail our relationship.

But I also feel like she and I are heading for another fight and I don’t want to take the bait. I think I’m going to stop talking to her for a while. In the very unlikely event that she messages me, I’m already planning to tell her I’ve just been busy.

Is this the right approach? I don’t honestly know. But what I do know is that I can feel that we’re on the verge of fighting again and it won’t be productive, so I’m trying hard to avoid it.

She messaged me last night, an unusual thing. I had a long delay in answering her because I was getting another tattoo. I told her that, acknowledging that I know she generally doesn’t like tattoos.

In the course of the conversation, she felt it necessary to tell me she didn’t think that the tattoos of mine that she’s seen were done with much talent or skill, which I thought was just extremely rude.

Instead of addressing her rudeness, I told her that I agreed and that I’ve since gotten most of them covered up because the artists down here are just better. She said that I was only looking for price more than quality before and no, that’s not it at all.

It’s that the tattoo artists in her smallish town where I used to live all suck. The ones who have any skill move to bigger cities. I didn’t even know that until I moved back here.

I told her that the tattoo artists in my hometown just aren’t very good and she got offended. But it’s the truth and that’s just one of a million reasons I don’t live there anymore.

I recently told her that I’m probably going to stay here even after J dies and that might be the reason she’s being rude to me. Or maybe it’s because she recently returned to work part-time and that’s making her grouchy. Or maybe it’s none of the above and she’s just being rude because she can and it reflects on the kind of person she is.

Either way, I’m not playing along.

Writing again

I was inspired to write another article for Medium, this one about Why I’ll Always Be a City Person. It was a response to another writer who wrote about all the things she loved about living rurally.

My point essentially is that the political parties—especially the Democrats—ignore the rural voters altogether, which is how we ended up with Trump. And I’m afraid that if they don’t adjust their approach, we’re going to get stuck with him again.

I decided not to pursue that opportunity from the recruiter. He changed his story today and it’s actually for a hotel, for one thing. But I honestly don’t think I can handle 6 am wake ups and long commutes again. Nothing has changed since the last time I tried.

But I did put together a portfolio website that I don’t feel ashamed of, so I think I’m going to start doing what I always thought was impossible: pitching markets.

I also had the interview for Newsweek today and apparently made it to the second round. That would be $2000 a month for very part-time work. I think that might be a good place to start, assuming I get it.

I know that I may be on the verge of losing my disability but I don’t think that’s a bad thing. Disability is helpful but I would still rather not be dependent on it (and Medicare is even worse than most of the health plans we’ve had through J’s work, which is really saying something.)

I feel reinvigorated to try again. There are a whole bunch of really good jobs that are 100% remote, so I don’t see the need to settle for office jobs and long commutes. Plus I’ve never been good at understanding office politics.

I’m kinda curious to see where this will lead, now that I’m going to put more effort into it.

Career opportunities and more thoughts

So I’ve been hit with some new potential career opportunities lately. One is the job at Newsweek, which I have an interview for. The other is a job I was contracted by a recruiter for today.

It’s a job writing for a commercial real estate company in Dallas, about a mile from J’s office. They do not offer any remote work options (unlike the job at Newsweek, which is fully remote.) The real selling point is the salary: it pays half again more than what J makes, plus bonuses.

I mean, for that kind of money, it’s just almost unfathomable. Between us we would be making well over $200K a year. I’ve just never even thought that was possible. Us!! Talk about a success story compared to how we were living in Michigan,

Mind you, this is only being contacted by a recruiter, but I revamped my resume to highlight my CRE experience and sent it to him anyway. But it got me to start thinking about trying to ramp up my career again and I think I’m going to go for it.

Whether it’s much better paying freelance opportunities or full-time work-at-home jobs, I’ve been selling myself very short. I know my experience is valuable and I should be paid much more than I am.

I really shouldn’t even be considering these piddly little customer service jobs that don’t require a college degree. I also really could be making a lot more money than I am—especially now that two of the kids are out of the house and my third one has a good plan to get there.

I’ve let my career take a backseat to the kids’ needs for 20 years and surprise—I still have skills that are in demand.

Can I really do 6 am wake ups and long commutes again? Honestly, I kind of doubt that, even still. I couldn’t do it 4 years ago and I don’t think I’ve improved that much.

But, if I’m really honest with myself, I think I could be doing more than what I am now. I think I’m capable of doing a lot more.

That obviously affects my future earnings, too. When I was looking at remote customer service jobs, they generally paid about equal to what I’d make on disability plus survivor benefits when my husband dies. But I do still have the ability, I think, to earn more than that (even staying at home.)

J and I had a lot of long talks on our way to and from going to visit our son last weekend. One of the things I did was let myself really cry my eyes out about my fear that he’s going to die soon.

He told me that his illness and pain now is mostly unrelated to the cancer. And his vomiting from chemo is an unfortunate sign that it’s working. He doesn’t feel like his death is as imminent as I’ve feared.

He told me to give him 12 years…not that he necessarily thinks he has that long, but that I’ve got to get out of survivor mode and start thinking that I will have the time to get more plans in place, including my finances. I still have the potential that I won’t be doomed to being an impoverished widow.

We also discussed that realistically, I probably won’t ever move out of this area after he’s gone. I know people here and my kids are here. If my car were to break down or I needed someone to take me to the hospital for a colonoscopy (for example), I have people here who could help me with that.

If I were to move anywhere else, the only other place where I would have a similar social network is Michigan, and just…no. I really can’t and vehemently don’t want to do that. I think I would die really soon after that if I did and he absolutely agrees.

The one thing I have to do, and will do this year, is to get a generator. I clearly can’t trust the power grid here and still have some real lingering PTSD from the storms last year while my husband was recovering from surgery. A generator will probably make me feel much more secure. And in a way, that makes me feel like a real grownup…finally.

I’m tentatively moving forward. He said that I have to have things I’m looking forward to, even without him, that aren’t all related to the kids. And I know he’s right.

I didn’t really know until I sobbed my eyes out with him just how depressed I felt and how imminent I felt his death was. But living that way really isn’t helping me; it’s keeping me impossibly stuck.

So here I go with Plan C or D or whatever plan I’m on to reinvent my life once again. There’s always time to keep trying, to keep getting up again after I’ve been knocked down. This may be the hardest challenge yet but I think I’m up for it.

My parents

Ugh. I was going to try to write about my conflicted relationship with them at Medium but I couldn’t make it not sound whiny. I’m too close to it, I guess.

I am conflicted, though. As I process and write about the kind of parents that my husband and I are, I can’t help but feel cheated by the contrast of what I have never gotten from my own parents.

There have been times when my mom in particular has had brief moments of almost getting it. But she clearly still doesn’t really know me or what I stand for—particularly when it comes to my parenting goals. I don’t think she really had any parenting goals.

In fact, I remember that one time shortly after I graduated high school, she said that all she hoped for was that I’d make it to my high school graduation without getting pregnant. I also remember that at the time, my uncle (my dad’s younger brother, who never had kids) said that he thought that was such a low bar. And it was. I had a lot of potential that my parents didn’t cultivate at all. (I mean, I graduated magna cum laude while raising three young kids, and it didn’t count because she didn’t think it was a hard enough major. Pretty rich for someone who never attended college.)

Even more than that, though, for that being their one goal for my life, they didn’t really DO anything to prevent it. It was only the fact that I was so underweight and malnourished that I didn’t have regular periods that actually kept me from getting pregnant. It wasn’t attributable at all to anything they did or didn’t do.

I let my mom read Dylan’s college admissions essay that got him into A&M yesterday; she was hopeful that it would make her feel more like she knew him. That in itself is incredibly sad to me—how can you not know who your grandson is? Of course, the answer to that is that she never listened to anything he talked about, choosing instead to cling to her incredibly inaccurate view that he liked to stir up trouble and make her life more difficult.

That’s not to say that he didn’t like stirring up trouble, but she didn’t even know why he was doing it. I did and that made me think he was even more awesome for doing so. He was never trying to upset her, like she thought; he was just eternally curious about everything and a bit of a good-natured prankster sometimes. His sense of humor is one of the traits his siblings and I like best about him because he’s otherwise so serious.

In his essay, he wrote about how moving down here was the pivotal moment that shaped him into who he is today: resilient, hardworking, determined to challenge himself.

And more than that, he also talked about how much my husband and I have been his greatest role models and support system.

I would love to think that my mom developed a different view of me when she read that but she didn’t seem to. That would take self-reflection, which I honestly don’t think she’s capable of. She’s perpetually in victim mode; things happen to her but she doesn’t think she has agency in them. I know that stems from childhood trauma she suffered and that’s very sad, but she’s never made any effort to get over it. At her age (67) she’s not likely to ever do the work.

I wanted her to read that and tell me I had done a good job in raising him. Of course, she didn’t.

I have realized that my relationship with both of my parents, but especially my mom, probably isn’t ever going to change. We’ll continue to text every few weeks (me almost always being the one to initiate it) and it will always be very surface-level stuff.

I feel disappointed that this is as good as it can possibly get. She doesn’t want to hear that she’s done anything damaging to me (and in fact, shuts it down if it starts going there.) She doesn’t want me to talk about my deeper feelings that might let her know about who I really am.

I am incredibly strong. I work on continually getting better and have made immense progress in the past five years in particular. I give my entire life to be in tune with my kids and to try to help them reach their goals.

I get it now that she will never get it. I’m still disappointed by that, though. Knowing that I have to keep my own mom on the level of a workplace friend hurts.

It also hurts that I have given my kids so much more emotional support than she’s ever given me. And that’s just my own burden to bear; I can’t do anything about it.

I’m very glad and grateful that I broke the cycle with my own children. I just wish she had any interest in breaking the cycle with me.

My daughter and thoughts on my mom

My daughter came over yesterday to finish cleaning her room for final move-out. We sat around talking for almost two hours first.

It was really interesting because I told her I didn’t want to say anything to try to poison her against my mom, but she had plenty to say anyway—which lets me know it’s not just me. Oddly, that’s kind of gratifying, because it makes me feel less insane.

She was thinking of trying to reach out to her various grandparents (as well as my youngest son.) I find that interesting in itself because it seems so grown-up and I definitely wasn’t at the same stage at her age.

She has a hierarchy of who she wants to talk to. J’s mom is at the top—I guess we’ll see if she finds my mother-in-law less frustrating to talk to than J or I do, lol. If she does tolerate it better, maybe that can work to our benefit.

My dad is second. As Amy said about the various grandparents, the fact of whether or not they have values determines whether or not she wants to talk to them. She sees my dad’s values as essentially being “relaxing is cool” (she’s not wrong) but at least that makes him chill to talk to.

J’s stepdad is dead-last because he’s made very inappropriate comments about trans women before and my daughter says he’s “creepy.” By her definition, his values are bad. I can’t argue with that.

Interestingly, about my mom, she said she’s essentially like a non-playable character in a video game (without the alt-right connotations that term sometimes has.)

My mom says all the right things about being supportive but she really isn’t; there’s no action behind it. That was Amy’s perception but I have to say it was dead-on. My mom doesn’t really have any hobbies or interests and she completely lacks self-awareness.

I get that, because that’s the exact same dynamic I had with my former best friend. She also had zero self-awareness and just wasn’t interesting to talk to.

On another note, though, I feel like I am really getting along well with my daughter. We’ve made plans to go out and do stuff, though they’re tentative and I’m not sure when they’ll actually happen.

She also told me that we had very clear values we raised her and her siblings with—namely the values of “family first” and supporting their creativity and interests. I am honestly so glad that that’s what she said, because those were the values we were trying to teach and it’s good to know we were successful.

On a different topic, my son said he was doing much better yesterday, so I’m relieved by that. And I’m getting together with his girlfriend and taking her to lunch on Saturday. I’m really looking forward to that. I’ve always felt like I’ve taken her under my wing and I’m really glad we can keep doing that.

And on yet another note, I wrote another article for Medium! I don’t think I’m going to share this one with my mom, though. It just doesn’t feel safe anymore. But I’m proud that I got over my issues and could write again. It even got chosen for further distribution.

Back from visiting my son

J and I drove down to visit our son at college yesterday. It was really, really good.

I determined first of all that he doesn’t really want to drop out; he’s just tired of not feeling well. I certainly don’t blame him for that.

We took him a bunch of stuff and got him more while we were there. I also picked up dinner for us and had it delivered to his dorm so he didn’t have to go out. I made just the right choice (pasta with grilled chicken and veggies) and he slowly ate most of it while we were there. He said that doing so made him feel a lot better. ❤️

Then he took us on a walk to show us some of his favorite places on campus. It was really cool seeing what his life is like there and I was honored to be able to see it. TBH, I can’t picture my parents having done the same for me if I’d gone away to college.

Hell, I’m still annoyed 14 years later that my mom stood up during my graduation ceremony and applauded for herself when they called out the family that supported us to stand. Apparently, she doesn’t remember that I had to take out extra loans to cover childcare because she was able but unwilling to do it for just 5 hours a week. And there’s also the fact that anytime I told her I was struggling, she always said, “you could just drop out.”

But anyway. I digress.

I’m determined to NOT be that kind of parent. He needs money, he needs medication, he needs us to drive six hours round-trip to see him—you’d better believe we’ll do it!

He was so happy to see us that he even got a little emotional. It was just good, all around.

He wants me to cancel the appointment with the dean about early withdrawal and give himself a chance to get better.

He’s already made friends there that he says he would miss, which I think is significant.

He’s torn between wanting a “gap year” (knowing that it might be permanent) and between wanting to stick it out at school. I’m actually relieved to hear that so much of him still wants to stick it out.

He walked *33 miles* last week, which is just phenomenal. He has to walk a lot to his classes but he also just spends a lot of time just walking for leisure. He took a lot of walks at home, so I’m not surprised.

He’s really torn between loving the opportunities he’s getting and the people he’s meeting and not feeling ready to grow up yet. I can understand that, even if it wasn’t my experience. My parents basically kicked me out and I never once missed them. The difference here is that he actually DOES miss us.

I’m hoping that with time, he’ll start feeling better and will want to stay there. He also said that his girlfriend mentioned getting together with me soon and I hope she does.

I tentatively hope things will end up okay. Seeing him made me feel a lot more confident about that. And he also said he wants to call home more often, and I totally support that, too.

Updates on my son

We’re going down to see him tomorrow, which was already planned. I bought him some stuff for a care package and ended up buying so much that to ship it would cost the same as paying for gas to go down there. Since it’s my husband’s week off of chemo, he readily agreed to go along.

It will be good to see my son. I miss him a lot.

I’m going to take him some medication I take for anxiety and see if it helps relieve his constant nausea. If it works, he might be able to stick it out.

At the same time, though, I am also nervous about him being there. They had a student Covid death this week, which is really freaking me out. I asked him “what the Covid situation is like” and he said it seems to be getting better. I didn’t tell him that I knew otherwise.

But I’m also telling myself that one student death out of 68,000 students (!!) isn’t really that many.

I am torn between wanting him to come home and take a “gap year” like his siblings did and wanting him to stay on track for a really good career. Ultimately, he’s the only one who can make that decision, so I just have to sit back and wait for him to make it.

I do have an appointment to talk to someone in the dean’s office on Monday about whether he can withdraw due to mental health without financial penalty. I’m also going to ask if he can defer his acceptance until next year, though I’m not sure if he’d want to go back.

He wants a gap year, yes, but he also feels like he’s too far away from home. That won’t be any different in a year. And we have lots of great universities in our local area where he could go instead.

I guess I’m just kind of in limbo while we wait for answers. He’s also got an appointment with the counseling center in two weeks (the soonest they could get him in.)

Meanwhile, I’m still getting more “spoons” and I’ve started chipping away at cleaning up a lot of the stuff I neglected while my health was suffering.

I still don’t know yet what to do about work. I applied for a job at Newsweek and actually got a request to schedule an interview (!!)—and I missed it. They actually sent the request two days ago and wanted to interview me on Thursday or Friday. I sent them an apology and asked if they would still be willing to do it Monday or Tuesday. But I’m figuring I probably lost out on that one.

I’m starting to feel like maybe, just maybe, I might be well enough again to get off disability. But maybe I don’t want to. And maybe feeling well is just temporary or at least that I’m not that much better.

Like everything else lately, I’m stuck in a holding pattern and trying to make the best of it.