on family and home

there’s a lot of stuff rumbling around in my head right now, but the main one is on “real” family vs “chosen” family, and “going home for the holidays.”

Some people well, actually, most people assume that when I talk about how I’m having fun with “my family” that I’m referring specifically to my blood family. I have no reason to do this, unless I’m talking about the rare get-together-things with my extended family that lives up here — and I refer to those as “a party with the cousins” or whatever.

It seems, some days, that it’s impossible to have a “chosen family” that is closer and more awesome than your blood family, just because that’s the impression that one can get from society and how family is portrayed in the media. Family is valued above all else, and I’ve even been told that I need to just “get over” my “angst” so that I can be a good daughter and honor my parents and blah blah blah. Seriously. The same person said that the abuse doesn’t matter, because the family is the most important thing.

I have a family. My family is my boyfriend. My family is my best friend in New York. My family is my mentor in Colorado, my previous play partner in Colorado, my friends in Oklahoma and California and New Jersey and Kansas. My family is my friend in Olympia who has saved my life in so many ways it’s impossible to list them all. My family is Shakesville, and Fugitivus, and Polimicks, and Shapely Prose [which is now sadly closed], and Two Whole Cakes [used to be Fatshionista].

A family is not always connected by blood. Experiences, friendship, trust, honesty, respect, and love are what holds a family together, and if a person’s blood family violates any of those it is a person’s right to break off and isolate from their relatives.

It is not wrong for any person to separate from anyone, even their blood family.

In that same vein, “home” for me is nowhere near my parents. Home is with my boyfriend, or my flat at school. I will be going home for the holidays, but I won’t be seeing my parents. “Going home” is not synonymous with “going to your parent’s home” and I’m tired of the two being conflated. I’m tired of correcting, time and again, that I don’t see, speak, hear from, or care about my parents.

Open your minds, people. There are those of us who were irreparably damaged by our “family” and we’re tired of hearing the push that family [meaning our blood family] is THE MOST IMPORTANT THING OF THE HOLIDAYS, GOD. It’s triggering, it hurts, and it’s not necessary.

oiiiii

there are certain words in the English language that should never ever EVER be put in the same sentence.

Words like “needles” or “scalpels” and “girlie bits.”

Because honestly, fucking ouch.

Two things

…that are totally unrelated. First, Harry Reid addressed Dr. Tiller’s murder — and finally, someone in power called it what it really was: an act of terrorism. There are two really good discussions on the matter here at ontd_political and here at ontd_feminism, both on LJ.

Second, either my allergies are doing things they’ve never done before [brave new world? I fucking hope not], or I’m dying.

To be more specific, it’s extremely hard to breathe, my inhaler [asthmatic here] isn’t doing much, and I’m whistling when I breathe. And no, before you ask, it’s not the air going by the perforation in my septum, since I’m kinda not breathing through my nose. Soooo… dunno what’s going on but I’m more than a tad worried. The other factors are only creeping me out more, as it potentially means a pulmonary embolism, though that could just be my I’M DYING sense kicking in.
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Now playing: VNV Nation – Illusion
via FoxyTunes

boosting the signal

Please check out this post over on Ye Olde ElJay and do what you can to spread the word and/or help out. Basically, a woman is trying to help a neighbor make back rent to keep her apartment, keep her child, and get away from a resentful ex.

Oh, look — a blog post; wherein I “come out” about things

It’s been some time since I’ve felt the energy to make a post here.  I’d say I’m sorry for being missing all this time, but — it’s been entirely out of my control, so I’m not really anxious to take the blame for medical reasons.

I’m also writing this with a [most likely] broken elbow, so… there may be typos and stuff you normally wouldn’t see here.  Such is life, apparently.  also, a protip: if your hand’s turning purple, your splint is WAY way too tight.

Life has been interesting.  I’m in between therapists right now because my previous, awesome one finished his internship and is leaving [v. sad] and I’m waiting to make an appointment with my new one.  This, of course, would have to happen right as things blow up, medically, mentally, and emotionally.  There’s something going on with my personal life that I’m having a very hard time coming to grips with — and I’m not comfortable posting about it until I talk to a couple very specific people first.

I’ve been dealing, on and off, with back pain for a long, long time.  Like, thirteen-fourteen years “a long time.”  At the beginning of the month, however, it got severely worse, to the point where I could barely make myself breakfast [when said breakfast consisted of toasting a bun and slicing some cheese up].  My doctor, however, told me that I didn’t need imaging, that the dowager’s hump I have is “just fat!”, and that I just need to [here it comes, folks!] LOSE WEIGHT AND EXERCISE.  Right, because I can totally run or lift weights or use the elliptical if I can’t stand, y’know?

Two visits to the emergency room, one myelogram, and some unusual meds later, I find out what’s going on.  No herniated discs [thank fuck for that, I’m not exactly excited over the prospect of spine surgery right now], BUT: I have degeneration in both of my sacroiliac joints [where your spine connects to your pelvis AKA rather fucking important] as well as what amounts to an extra joint in my lumbar spine.  And yes, both of them are extremely painful.

What this means to me?  I have no “hope” of ever “losing the weight by being active” again.  It’s taken a long, long time for me to admit it, but here it is: I am disabled.  I’m not in that “able with issues” group any longer, I’m fully in that “yep, I’m fucked!” stage.  And while this, again, is only my view and take on it, it’s … shocking.  Even though I had a niggling feeling for so, so very long that there was Something Wrong with me, I’d not only refused to admit it, but I wouldn’t have accepted it if a doctor told me, flat-out, that my spine was fucked.

I guess that’s the danger of a slow, slow crawl from “fully able and active” [I did gymnastics, soccer, flag football, and seven very successful years of softball when younger] to “disabled.”  It’s harder to accept, because you can’t see the changes.  You’re too close to the problem, something like “not seeing the forest for the trees.”  And while I can’t say that a car accident would’ve been preferable [oh hell no], I still wonder how my thought processes would have wandered if it had been something sudden.

And here is where I gripe, yet again, over the state of health care in this country.  Because I look “just fine!” other than the terrible, terrible sin of daring to be fat, nobody believes me when I say that I have spine, hip, and other problems that preclude things like, oh, I dunno… walking across the [very large] college campus in one go.  The looks I got last week while doing a visit for ~daring~ to sit down and rest after walking some distance were … extremely hurtful.  The alternative, of course, would have been to keep walking and collapse in a fit of pain-induced vomiting fifteen steps later.  I’m not joking, it’s really really fucking painful and there comes a time during the day when I have to sit/lay down and rest or I will be making a trip to the ER.

And sadly, a number of the people giving me the nastygram looks were people with other disabilities.  Canes, wheelchairs, walkers… whatever.  And — at this point in time, I take my cane with me almost everywhere.  It’s not worth the risk of not having it when needed anymore, so it’s not like people can’t tell I’m having problems.  It’s an “invisible disability,” but I’m not without visual cues that shit’s fucked in Kaieville.

Well, now that I’ve rambled for some time, gonna try to get back on track.

The thing is, it’s not easy for me to accept this.  And I know that certain of my ~medical care team~ will do everything they can to shame me and bully me into thinking that I did this by *omg* being fat.

Except — lumbarization is not something you can control.  You can’t sit there and say, “hey, spine, don’t fully fuse at the sacrum/lumbar intersection!” — it’s automated, and you can’t fuck it up by doing… whatever.  And the degeneration?  Yeah, family history there.  Hips?  Injuries and sciatica… blah blah blah.

I’m not really looking forward to my next appointment.  And while yeah, I could technically switch doctors, that’s not as easy as it sounds.  Because, you see, Medicaid is a jackass and limited me to one PCP, one controlled substances provider, one pharmacy, and one hospital [for non-emergency purposes].  And so all referrals need to go through my PCP… which… means I can’t vet or change doctors without him approving it.

Can you see it?  “Yeah, doc, I want to stop seeing you and check out other doctors because you’re not doing what I need you to do; can you give me a referral?”  In a perfect world, this wouldn’t be an issue.  Hell, in a fucking perfect world, I wouldn’t be needing to switch doctors.  But, in this fucked-up system and fucked-up world, you take what you get.

And besides, how do you successfully change a doctor’s worldview from “your fat olololol CALORIES IN CALORIES OUT” to “yeah, being thin isn’t the end-all-be-all, just focus on being healthy for now”?  Especially if he thinks that your spinal problems will go away if you just… oh, forget it all.

I’m having a rough time, honestly.  I’m withdrawing into myself again, because I can’t get outside often, and when I do, it’s either to the doctor’s office, the pharmacy, or the grocery store.  That’s it.  I haven’t been “out” for fun in… since my birthday, actually.  Two and a half months.

It’s hard being alone.

And it’s even harder when none of your providers can accept that shit needs to happen BEFORE you’ll be able to ~lose weight~, especially if you can’t be “active” at all.

That’s gonna be a helluva appointment.

And with that, I bid you adieu for today.  I hope to post more often, but — I won’t guarantee anything.  Just keep checking back as you can.

Time to return

I’d like to once again apologize for my sudden absence.  Again, my health went down the drain for some time and I’m still trying to recover.  But, life goes on, and so does the blogaround.

Things to go “yay!” about:

  • HCR.  YAY!
  • President Obama signing an executive order… well, ordering hospitals that accept Medicare and/or Medicaid to allow same-sex partners to be in the room and make decisions based on the patient’s living will.  YAY!
  • Good cheese from the store.  YAY!
  • Holy cow, I won two books!  From Katherine Gilraine for writing up a blurb. YAY!
  • Holy cow, I’m going to school!  My financial aid came in and YEP it covers everything.  YAY!
  • Holy crap, I organized my iTunes!  YAY!
  • Oh my gods, my room is clean!  YAY!

Things that are “meh!”:

  • my body hates me!  MEH!
  • apparently my Luddite [immediate] family finally found Facebook.  MEH! [though this could be classified as either a meh or a bah, so.]
  • Twitter is both a blessing and a curse.  MEH!
  • So is Facebook.  MEH!

Things that suck and are “bah!”

  • fibromyalgia.  BAH!
  • Ovarian cysts.  Lots and lots of them.  BAH!
  • Bleeding, unexpectedly [I’m sure that my female readers don’t need any sort of translation].  BAH!
  • Oh look!  Today’s the third anniversary of my assault.  FUCKING BAH!
  • Damn it, the meetup I was planning on attending in June got canceled.  BAH!
  • HCR [yes, this is both a yay and a bah] — see: women’s health rights and gay/transgendered rights.
  • Nebraska is being stupid about abortion too.
  • So is Kansas, although that comes without saying.
  • ENDA stuff getting bogged down in … well, everything
  • “fat rights” is also bogged down.  Not surprising since apparently fat-hate and/or fat shaming is the last officially recognized “phobia” in the civilized world.
  • Medicaid, apparently, has decided that when you’re due for an ~evaluation~ your fate gets decided by someone you’ve never met.  How strange.
  • The SSA is being stupid as well.

There’s a lot more stuff I need to cover, but that’s a short list for now.  I definitely will be updating more in the days and weeks to come, so watch this space!

Congratulations!

ABNA [Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award] released their list of 2nd round authors today – that is, the authors whose books have made it past the first round and into the second.

My dear, dear friend Katherine Gilraine is on the list for her book The Index, Book 1: Mages!  So many, many congratulations and I’m so happy for you, Kat!

Note of celebration!

I got my acceptance email to The Evergreen State College today.

I am stoked.