When I grow up

Since I got fired from my job at the produce stand, I’ve been thinking about what kind of job I’d like to have next. It’s been harder than I thought.

Seriously, when I’m 48 years old and having to ask myself “what do I want to be when I grow up?”…

…then something is wrong with this picture. With assistance from a job placement specialist (thank you, vocational rehab!), I get to set parameters for what kind of job this lady finds me.

  • What days am I able/willing to work?
  • What hours am I able/willing to work?
  • What kind of physical restrictions do I have?
  • Do I need any adaptive technology or accommodations to do the job?
  • What would I like to do?
  • What do I refuse to do?

And so on and so forth.

So here I am, trying to decide what I want to be when I grow up.

And “the idle rich” ain’t gonna cut it with vocational rehab.

So tell me, what do you want to be when you grow up?

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Getting older

After my doctor’s appointment yesterday, I went to the evil empire (a.k.a. wally world) to get my prescriptions filled. Because the evil empire.pharmacy kept fucking them up, I was in the big box store for over an hour. Which meant a lot of random shit found its way to my buggy, like all those pills we talked about last night.

The general consensus seems to be that I’m getting older and I now need to go get myself one of those old lady pill organizers.

There’s this part of me that is resistant to the idea, kind of like I was resistant to minivans in my 20s. I mean, seriously, minivans made a statement that I really just wasn’t ready to make at that point in my life. Pill organizers say something that I’m not emotionally ready to say about my life at this point.

In the abstract, I have no problem with getting older. I’m not one to buy into they hype and start buying anti-aging creams and dying my hair to cover my grey. Fuck that, I earned every grey hair on my head, right? Everybody ages, and that which we resist persists.

So hypothetically, I’m ok with getting older. Everybody does it, I’m not trying to fight it because that requires more energy than I’m willing to invest.

It’s not just the pill organizer that’s bothering me, though. As I wandered through the evil empire, I realized that I wasn’t seeing things as clearly as I used to. I knew my vision was less than perfect; hell, I’ve already got glasses for distance vision that I use for driving, and reading glasses for my hobby activities. Yesterday’s vision problems were more than just distance vision or reading vision. It was the middle distance that was fuzzier than I’m accustomed to.

So now, along with my old lady pill organizer, I’ve got to go get me some bifocals or trifocals or some shit.

Ultimately, I’m mostly just grateful to still be here. So many addicts never make it to the rooms of 12 step fellowships. Of those who do make it, so few stay; even fewer stay clean. I’m still here; and mostly, everything still works. I never thought I’d be alive this long.

I’m getting older. I guess it’s better than the alternative, so I’ll just roll with it best I can.

#endofdays

The apocalypse is night. The end of days is upon us. The 4 horsemen are galloping our way. The first plague has erupted here in North Central Texas. 

Seriously.

Fucking ladybugs or Japanese lady beetles or whatever the fuck these damned things are…
They’re invading everyone’s home, trying to find their way into the walls and ceilings and light fixtures and my hair.

I borrowed Rude Ass’s shop vac yesterday and vacuumed them off my ceiling and Windows and floor, and within a half hour, there were already a significant number of new bugs crawling on my ceiling and landing in my hair.

I’m on the verge of calling an exterminator, because it passed disconcerting long ago; zoomed right through seriously disturbing, and I have no clue what the hell it is now but I’m pretty sure this won’t end well if we don’t plan a massive defense in this war against the zombie ladybugs  (or whatever the hell these things are).

If I drop off the radar, send search & rescue and the orkin man.

What the…

Yesterday was a work day. My hard work day. Fridays are the day I have to clean up after Hurricane Bossman made landfall and sat in the shop for days on end.

Yesterday was no exception.  I cleaned up after a week away, I moved new stock into the walk-in cooler, I got old stuff off the shelves and replaced it with new. I wound up wading through our autumn display of gourds and such to help an woman choose decor for her front porch, and noticed an rotting gourd. When I finally had customer-free time, I grabbed a shovel and a crate to go in and get the rotting pumpkin out. Because they fucking stink to high hell.

Upon closers inspection, I discovered that there were multiples. Because of course there were. While I was scraping that he’ll Ishmael mess up with my trusty shovel, the boss showed back up (making me wonder why on earth I was still seeing his face since he had been told to go home and get some sleep hours ago). 

Of course, he let me scoop up the gross mess while he dealt with customers. Weiner. 

After I had gotten that done, he decided it was ago good time to unload the truckload of giant pumpkins he had brought in. Because he didn’t think I was tired enough,  I guess.

It was a long, hard day. The only thing that saved it was being able to take a selfies with a pumpkin that we will gladly sell you for $100. And we have 3 of these big bastards.

What the hell does one even do with that much pumpkin? 

How did I get here?

Have you ever watched those HGTV and/or DIY shows where a couple builds or remodels a house? I’m not talking about any one show in particular; because ultimately they’re interchangeable.  Boy meets girl; they plan a house; she (or he, depending on which one is the bigger asshole control freak) starts nitpicking and changing things, causing change orders, overages, and delays.

While often entertaining to watch, those nitpickers are a nightmare for the general contractor and all the subcontractors/skilled tradespersons. Sunshine has dealt with many of those nitpickers in his career as a Mason, and he’s figured out the best way to deal with the nitpicking change order junkies is to repeatedly demonstrate that there are consequences to all the changes and nitpicking: every time the nitpickers come at him with a change or addition, a change order form gets filled out and a 25% deposit is required on the spot. Generally, it works.

Side note: sunshine HATES those HGTV and DIY shows. He says they’ve spoiled homeowners  to the point where they expect their contractor/tradesperson to hold their hand, present them with a set number of options, and explain the pros and cons of each option. He is not amused.

Tuesday,  I did a walk-through, looking over the progress that had been made while I was traveling. Overall, I was impressed at first glance. The blue glass has been set into the wall between the bathroom and bedroom, the exterior walls are almost finished…it’s starting to look like something.

Then I started walking through rooms, and ended in the bathroom. Which is where shit started to go awry. Sunshine had made the shower too narrow, and I wasn’t having it. I moved the wall. Which totally negated all the special work he had commissioned for the bathroom window frame. I feel bad; however, now is absolutely the right time to be widening the shower–before waterproofing membrane and tile are installed and fixtures are in place.

I added a cabinet/shelf in the bathroom,  a tiny broom closet between the studs of the wall, an in-wall fold-down ironing board, and a pot filler over the stove.

Of course, most of that changed again as I walked through the house with the electrical engineer. So did a lot of my lighting choices, because I got talked into ceiling fans.

Side note: I do NOT want ceiling fans. I can’t find any ceiling fan lighting kits that I like, and can only find ceiling fans that I can sort-of tolerate. I’ve also nixed some of my light fixtures because of the additional pieces pieces-parts that I don’t want to have to figure out how to hide.

I’m sitting here this morning, wondering how in the hell I got here. How in the hell did I become the nitpicker who changes everything every time she walks through the building with a tradesperson? I don’t like me right now, yet I refuse to compromise on some of this shit because I have to live with it for the rest of my life. Hopefully, I don’t drive Sunshine too crazy before it’s all over.

Final note: they have already nicknamed me “change order”

Holes

I don’t know what’s with all the holes lately.

I’m mostly referring to socks; but really, it’s more than just the socks. There’s that giant gaping hole in my gut (anxiety), there was the great septic system debacle that involved holes and trenches scattered over the property, there’s the holes we shot in my scarf and my jeans, holes in Sunshine’s work clothes….

I suppose the work clothes bit doesn’t surprise me. Sunshine is a mason, and masons work with bricks and rocks and blocks and sand and all sorts of abrasive shit; the fact that there is lime in the mortar just contributes to the problem. The man can destroy a $300 pair of Red Wing boots in two years; that same pair of boots might last a carpenter ten years and a hipster could get twenty years of life out of them.

But it’s the socks that kill me. Sunshine gets pedicures pretty regularly; I insisted on it when he got diagnosed as diabetic. His feet aren’t the problem, so I don’t know what the fuck is making so many holes in his socks. Maybe it’s the sand, getting in his boots. The answer to this question will probably continue to elude me well past the end of days.

side note: what kills me worse than the holes in the socks is Sunshine’s stubborn refusal to NOT WEAR THE SOCKS WITH HOLES IN THEM. What the fuck is that even about? I have given up on trying to figure it out or convince him to throw away his gross socks. I just keep an eye on the laundry now, and toss them when I see them come through.

As boggled as I am by all the holes in Sunshine’s socks, I am even more befuddled at the holes I saw in my socks when I took them off after work on Sunday. I work with fruit. How the fuck am I getting holes in my socks? Pears have a gritty texture, but it ain’t that fucking gritty. I can’t figure it out.

If anybody has the answer, please share it with me. I’m driving myself crazy trying to figure out how I wound up with holes in my socks.

final note: Normally, I would probably take this opportunity to bitch about the missing socks. You know the ones I’m talking about. They go missing in the laundry cycle, and nobody can seem to pinpoint exactly where they go. I’ve finally discovered the answer to this question. When a sock goes missing in the laundry, it reappears in the kitchen as a Tupperware lid that doesn’t fit anything.

Not my problem

Since I found recovery from addiction, I’ve learned a lot about NMP (Not My Problem). Before I got clean, I felt like I had to “fix” people and situations. In recovery, I’ve learned that the only thing I can “fix” is me, and I can’t even do that alone.

So when Mr B and I were watering the garden this morning, and we got to talking about how much we needed some help doing things out here because I was getting tired, Mr B gave me the “talk” that he gave Sunshine recently. He told me that I didn’t have to do more stuffs out here: I didn’t have to cut the grass, or work on projects on the lists on the kitchen wall in the pink house, and so on and so forth.

Basically, he was telling me that the stuffs on those lists were not my problem.

Well, if they’re not my problem, then what the fuck are they? Nobody’s problem? Because there damn sure isn’t anybody else out here doing these things, which means that none of these things on any of these lists are getting done.

I can’t not cut the grass. I can’t not maintain the sloped earthen mound around the storm shelter. I can’t not tend the chickens. I can’t not start dealing with the jungle on the fence-line.

If Sunshine and I don’t cut the grass, the entire property will become overgrown. That is a simple fact. Nobody else is cutting the grass, and the fucking grass has to be fucking cut. If we don’t cut the grass, the wilderness begins encroaching on the areas that have been mapped out for human habitation and gardening and such. Once the wilderness creeps in, the predators creep in, the bugs become more of a problem, etcetera etcetera ad nauseum.

If nobody maintains the sloped earthen mound around the storm shelter, there goes our option to survive tornado season. That is a very simple truth that my anxiety ridden ass cannot deny or avoid. If Sunshine and I don’t maintain the sloped earthen mound around the storm shelter, then Sunshine and I will die come tornado season.

side note: that’s not hyperbole. We are entirely too close to the Oklahoma state line (and by extension, Moore Oklahoma) to be playing around with the integrity of the fucking storm shelter.

If Sunshine and I don’t tend the chickens, then we don’t have a future source of eggs and potentially meat. That is a simple fact. If we don’t keep chickens for the eggs (and maybe even the meat), then we have to pay for eggs and meat, which kind of defeats the purpose of transitioning to a homesteading type of lifestyle that enables us to work less for someone else and work more towards our own self-sufficiency.

If we don’t start truly dealing with the jungle on the fence-line, then the rickety fence will become even more rickety, thus cancelling out all the work that Sunshine put into fixing the fucking fence in the first place. It also doesn’t clear the way for us to go to our buddy’s house and transplant some of his blackberry bushes to our fence-line for their ability to provide us with fruit.

I appreciate the sentiment behind Mr B’s “talk”. I just don’t understand it.

If it’s not my problem, then what? I’m just supposed to sit here and live in an encroaching forest with no sources of food and go to work to pay for the shit that we moved here to not have to pay for?

If it’s not my problem, whose problem is it? If I don’t do it, who is going to do it? I don’t see anybody else out here working to build a community (with the exception of Mr B when he has time to get out here while he works to transition out of his old life as a serial entrepreneur). I still have to do my part to be as self-sufficient as I can without having to depend on someone else to support me. I still have to work for somebody else to buy my food and shit.

If it’s not my problem, then what am I supposed to be doing?

final note: today, I am tired as hell. I spent most of yesterday on the road, driving round trip to my sponsor’s house for some quality time with my recovery sisters. I think that, just for today, I’m going to do something I enjoy. Like watch netflix while I crochet or color.