31 December 2007

Drinking Karoake and Singing Corona

Monday 31Dec07 10:15am

So I've overcome my excruciating pain, for the most part. It's been quite the journey for sure.

It's so funny how things can just drop into your lap sometimes. I'd been of course suffering in pain for almost 2 months when I went to see Theatre Rusticle's show April 14, 1912. Before the show I caught up with the people who seeing the show with me and saw the director's boyfriend. He looked at me and was just shocked by how out of it from the pain I was. He said, "We have to take care of this!"

I watched the show without moving a bone for the whole show. Great show, by the way. It was mentioned as one of the top 10 theatre shows (and companies) in Now magazine for 2007!

After the show there was an opening night reception and again, everyone was looking at me with such shock from how out of whack I looked. I cannot even describe the kind of pain I was in. All I can say is that I cried at least once a day because of the pain. My one friend who is a massage therapist just kept staring at me trying to figure out a way to help me since I said I couldn't even tolerate the thought of manipulative massage. I would do Reiki if I could find a good Reiki practitioner.

I spoke to boyfriend again and he asked me if I met husband of one of the other attendees. "Husband can help you!" He said as he dragged me over to where Husband was. He literally said to him, "This is Shelley, she's in pain, Help Her!" ha ha.
Husband brought me to his car, like we were doing a drug deal (as we all laughed nervously about how suspicious we looked). He didn't have a machine in his car but promised to get one to me. True to his word, he passed one on to TR's director and she dropped it off to me at work. I started the sound vibration that night.

Strange little machine. The booklet says that you can only work on two pained areas at once. I chose my carpal tunnel and my neck pain figuring it was like book ends, start there and the stuff in the middle will get the effects. I used the machine twice a day for three weeks. Within a week I was feeling improvements and within the 2nd week, the pain was GONE! Like with medication you have to follow through on the program even if the pain has gone and I was a good girl and followed through.

Hmm, the machice is called Ensonix Sound Vibration. A picture of it can be found at http://www.myarthritisstore.com/ (click the title of this entry)
Of course if some sales guy had come up to me to sell me one of them I'd think he's a freak and wouldn't believe in the benefits. But because I was in so much pain and had tried everything save chopping my arm off (which I'd considered) I was willing to try sucking on Olives if someone told me it would help and I hate Olives. Because my pain was acute pain, I think, the machine worked quickly. I'm currently using it on my arthritic toes and am starting the 3rd go round (three weeks of sound therapy, 5 days of none). But my arthritis is chronic pain that I've had for close to 20 years so I'm expecting it will take some time. I have felt some improvement. The other recommendation is to have as little weight bearing activities as possible which is hard for my feet since I need to walk. But it's coming along.

The whole pain thing freaked me out soundly. I really had to slow down plus I kept my outings with friends to a bare minimum. My girlfriend Jojo kept me as drunk as possible as much as possible. ha ha! My Halloween girlfriend (day of her birthday) recommended taking gravol to help me sleep. It increased my sleep time from 2 hours to 4 hours. Lolo sent me many a message and placed a couple of calls from South Korea to check in on me. And of course the Theatre Rusticle clan set me up with this sound vibration that truly saved my life. Even my boys at work were getting freaked out because I was breaking down at my desk. I was honestly considering going to my doctor to find out about medicinal weed!

So since then I took it easy. I've been pretty scared to work on my computer at home so the writing has been nonexistent. I've stayed away from using the phone as much as possible since I'm one of those bad people who rests it on my shoulder which is not good if I don't want to be in any pain. Thankfully I was out of pain in time for my Author's festival and enjoyed that as always and met a really nice author from Germany (Jakob Arjouni). We exchanged email addresses and I have yet to send him any greetings.

November I lost my fourth and newest cat Zoe. I only had her for five months and half of that time I was in pain. So I didn't know her well enough to notice that she wasn't acting right. When I finally realized, she's just not right I rushed her to the vet and was not given a good prognosis. I brought her home and spent the last day with her and the next morning brought her to the Humane Society because I couldn't bear the thought of putting another cat down at the exact same time as I put my beloved Saki down 4 years ago. It was too much to bear. I cried the whole time at the Humane Society. I cried and apologized to Zoe and was heart broken to find out that when you surrender a pet to the Humane Society you never know one way or the other about the pet. Nothing. Did they save her life? Did they put her down? Nothing. Now I don't donate money to charity with the thought, "What's in it for me?" But you'd think after years of donating money that is matched by the company I work for, that there would be something to make me feel better... I'm just saying. I walked home with the empty carrier case balling my eyes out. I was such a mess I couldn't even contemplate taking public transit.

That devastation brought me into December. It's a bad month of the year at the best of times, what with it being when my Mom died and all my previous years of hating Christmas and the like. The first week brought me into month end and year end deadlines at work. One boss, the procrastinator of the century, just wasn't handing in all the stuff that I knew he should be. Every day I told both bosses, don't wait til the last minute because I'm not working any overtime for this. I made it really clear that Friday, Dec 7th (the day that my Mom died) was my deadline for my work. There was no way that I could do any of their stuff on Friday. Can you feel it coming? No overtime, my work deadline Friday!

So Thursday at about 12:30pm, the procrastinator of the Century gives me all his stuff for purchase orders that must be done or they will fall in to next years budget. It was the stack that even if I didn't take my lunch break I still wouldn't get done without staying over time! BITTER! I was so bitter that I yelled at him several times. I asked, "How long have you been sitting on this? I've told you, I've told you, I have my own shit to do tomorrow." I stayed late. I made him go get and buy me dinner. All was done! I was home by 7:45pm. I was tired but at least I was fed. It was all good.

Friday I send out an email asking very politely when the flatfile (a file with every charge made for the previous month) would come out and could it be soon. It takes me at least a couple hours to get through it and then I have a bunch of reports I have to run, balance, sign and get signed before I can hand it off to Accounting for them to upload everything into their program that they will ultimately process the invoices from. I run the error report for the flatfile and there is an error in it. There isn't supposed to be. I know off the first page that I'm not going to meet my work deadline. Okay. I can correct everything and see if I can get an updated version of the flatfile but even if I can, I won't get it until late afternoon which means I'll have to stay late on a Friday on the anniversary of my mom's death.

I go into a slow freak out that gains momentum: "I'm not staying late. I can't stay late. I shouldn't even be here. I should be home remembering my mother. I can't believe this is happening. Accounting is going to freak out. I can't believe I missed those things on the previous flatfile but I'm rushing through everything to get everything done and now I'm fucking up my own work. shit shit shit!"

I send an email to Accounting and the Property Manager: "I am not going to meet the year end deadline. I have officially reached the point in my position where I have too much work and I'm rushing through it and making mistakes. I don't know what else to tell you. Shelley"

The property manager calls and says that you can only do so much and shit happens. I start to explain what's happened and I burst into tears and say "I shouldn't even be here! I'm going home!"

I send my two bosses an email to their blackberries at 12:50pm (who are out for lunch because it's the one bosses birthday, by the way): "I am leaving for the day at 1pm. Shelley"

I log out of everything, shut everything down, put on my coat and wait for my co-worker to get back from lunch. I tell him that my deadline is fucked that I've had enough that I am going home and he looks so worried about me it's actually heartbreaking. I cry all the way home. ha ha! I never did spend any time properly remembering my mom because I was such a basket case.

The next day I bought new clippers and gave myself the Warrior Woman head shave. And was scary calm for the staff Christmas party. I wasn't sure if I was going to be fired, reprimanded or what after leaving work on Friday. But it turned out that my co-worker told my birthday boss what happened when he got back from lunch. Birthday boss said, "I knew it had to be something big for her to just leave like that." The party was fun and all was well in the world.

So in the last 6 months my boys have discovered that I'm not really one of the boys with all the tears of mine that they've seen between my pain, my cat, and my emotional breakdown. I've gained more of an attitude that I can only do my best and strive a little less for ultimate perfection (I admit to being a perfectionist at work). Perfection will kill you.

With my new calm demeanor I made it through the rest of the month unscathed. My bosses and I got out to more contractor's Christmas parties, which was a nice treat. I skipped any other outing that wasn't work related. We had our party in our department and one of the boys brought in his Karoake machine which went from me saying, "no, I'm not singing in front of strangers," to me singing the whole afternoon away as the building entertainment. No word of a lie. Then every one went home and I was still there at 8pm with the two guys on shift singing til the cows came home. ha ha! I basically had one of my "me, myself and I parties" in public. Lord help me!

Drinking Karoake and Singing Corona (that's how it felt when co-worker drove me home at the end of his shift.)

So needless to say after the trials and tribulations that were 2007 , I'm ready to put all that behind me and move forward with my goals. hmm, and I'm contemplating getting a karoake machine... just kidding!


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