Still an avid writer, but have not been keeping up on counting what I have sent out the last few years. If you would like to become pen pals please feel free to drop me an email to get things started. You can never leave a love of fountain pens and fine stationery behind.
Monday is here again. I am starting to feel more and more like Garfield about Monday’s although the rest of the week hasn’t been peachy keen either. Anyways enough with the melancholy in text form. On to the music for today.
For a second week, sadly I just am not feeling the inspiration to restart this meme in a fictional sense. I am badly blocked and I know exactly why that is. My heart is still broken, sometimes it feels as if I can barely breath. However, as Superman (yes dear readers, I use code names and letters for folks in my life cause not everyone likes to be all over in random blog posts. So I respect that and getting back to the point) reminded me a writing prompt does not always have to be for a fictional story. A writing prompt can be for a personal story, or a poem or anything really even a song. I have sat and thought about this for a while and you know what he is right. So here is the writing prompt for this week Saturday Sanctuary and hopefully next week I will have Mr. Linky set up again.
For better or for worse, we all are going to go through a grieving process at some time in our lives. I think 2016 was full of ,so much grief for many in the world, it is hard to think that we can hold anymore within us. I think that is one reason I am having such a hard time currently. 2016 was a hard grief filled year for me as for many others. Don’t get me wrong, there were some fantastic, wonderful moment’s as well, ones that I wouldn’t change for the world. However, it is very hard not to focus on all the loss that happened. I swear whomever gave George R.R Martin the pen to write 2016 needs to be eaten by Ramsay Boltson’s dogs. Hopefully someone kinder has the pen this year, my year didn’t start out well though. My year just rolled on keeping with 2016 and losing my sweet boy has just ripped me into pieces. I am trying to say it was the last gasp of 2016 because I still want 2017 to be a great year, I really do want to try and hold things together and see 2017 be an unforgettable year for all the right reasons.
At the moment, though it is all I can do to hold the ribbons of myself together as they fray and unravel. It seems the second I grasp on to one end, another one starts going and the effort all seems futile. It would be easy to give in, easy to just lay down and give up. I really want to do that, I am so tired, so very tired in so many different ways. But taking the easy way out and giving up has never been my way. So I am going to keep grasping at those ribbons, keep trying to hold them together. Eventually, they will start to mend. Eventually I will have enough tape and hot glue to get the ribbons to hold together. Then from there I can start applying gold to the cracks. I have always found the art of Kintsugi interesting, since last year and now going into this one I have become a little bit obsessed with it. Kintsugi art gives me a little hope, it makes met remember that eventually this too will heal. It may take time and you have to be patient, but in the end you will be stronger and prettier for having survived.
If you don’t know Kintsugi is the Japanese art of fixing a broken piece of pottery with potter clay or enamel mixed with gold dust or other precious metals. I suppose some of the richer people may have used pure stuff instead of the dust ect. At any rate this art form believes that you work the breakage into the art, that the piece is stronger and more beautiful because it was repaired and broken than before, rather then try to hide the breaks. Something inside of me really feels a pull towards that idea, it really does.
I know it will take time, I know I can’t rush things and I should be gentle with myself. It is one thing to know these things it is another to put them into practice. For the moment I am just getting through the day one breath at a time, one second at a time. Hopefully it will get easier soon, I hope so, I really do. I know I need a vacation from pain and well a regular one from so much work. For the moment, though, one second at a time, one breath at a time I will keep slowly going. Until I can rise again like a Phoenix.
There has been such a shift in things since last week. It feels like it has been a century, it does not seem like it could only be a week. I miss my Pash Pash so much and can fully admit that I am not coping very well without him right now. I know this too shall pass, but for now it really doesn’t feel as if it will. This song is a little bit comforting to me and it was one that Pash Pash enjoyed listening to with me when it came up in rotation. He was such an expressive cat you could see his eyes light and his tail twitch when he enjoyed a song.
I was so excited to find something this week to act as a prompt. To be able to write again and see if anyone else wanted to play along. Alas the universe had other plans this week. I have had an utter lack of any kind of inspiration this week because on Monday our family said goodbye to my beloved Pash Pash kitty. It has left a giant bleeding hole in my heart and others too.
Pasha was such a sweet boy, mischievous but loving. He enjoyed snuggling with just about anyone he met. Life with him was a true blessing. He was not feeling well for a day and a half, before he suddenly just took a turn. I had planned on taking him to the vet right away when they opened, but when he took a turn, when I saw his distress I had to run him to the emergency vet. Of course I have written all of this in my previous post about grief. No sense in telling the entire story again. I feel silly repeating even here, but for this week because of this my Pash Pash has taken my creativity with him. I am sure it will come back, he would not want me to be without it. Pash Pash enjoyed hours upon hours of sitting in my lap while banged away at the keyboard writing one thing or another. He would then sit happily in my lap snoring as I did some crochet. Beyond that, of course, even when I was writing letters to pen pals there he was happy to snuggle and occasionally make a swat at the pen I was using. Many pen pals have gotten letters with random swipes and big blops of ink and me writing sorry about that it was Pasha trying to help.
I will see him again know that, just like I know I will get my “mojo” back. Alas, it is just not going to happen for now. Perhaps maybe next week. Now it is time to close as Dutchy stares and yells at me.
Grief is a terrible thing, I would truly not wish it on anyone. Be that the grief of losing a human loved one or like I am currently doing a fur kid. 2016 was a shit year for deaths and grief and just when I thought it was safe to drop my guard a little bit, it got one final kick in the face for me. You see, despite the actual event happening in 2017 I am still willing to blame 2016. Now, I may not usually make huge public posts about loss being suffered by me or my family, but it was pointed out to me the other day that letting it go, putting it out there might help some. In other words, at the risk of sounding a little Disney in this moment, Let it go. So here I am attempting to do that, after all I do love to write in many mediums and sometimes you have to write about things that hurt or aren’t all unicorns and glitter.
On Monday, for Musical Monday I posted a song in honor of my sweet kitty Pash Pash. He was feeling under the weather and sweet cat that he was, he loved to listen to music with me. There were some songs that even made him flick his tail and do a little bit of a dance with me. Yes, you will see that I am using the past tense when I reference my sweet Pash Pash. You see, just hours after that post went up around 3:30 am Pasha took a serious turn for the worse and it was clear that we would not be waiting for our regular vet to open up to get him looked at.
Nearly forgetting my own shoes and completely forgetting anything warm for myself, Pash pash was bundled up in his favorite little skull blanket and a towel in my arms as I sat passenger in the car. The first ER vet that we went to was closed. Yes, CLOSED. There was a great deal of cussing and upset over the whole thing, because this is the ER vet our regular vet suggests to go to and there was no notice nothing at all but a sign taped to the door. Frankly, I was pretty darn cheesed off about the whole thing, but of course in the moment I was more worried and anxious for my sweet Pash Pash. Back into the car we went and took off for the next ER vet we knew about. We were not 100% sure where it was located and I don’t think a car full of people has ever been SO happy to see a big red sign that said EMERGENCY.
They took my bundle from me and went back to their emergency area. It was a struggle not to stay right on their rear ends, he is my baby boy. They didn’t keep us waiting too long when they came out to take us into a room and let us know that he was a little cold, but they put him in a nice warm bubble to get him warmed up and they would take vitals and such. More waiting for what seemed like forever and then they came back to talk to us. They got him warmed up and his vitals were overall okay. He was breathing more rapid than they would like, but his heart and lungs sounded good. The concerning part was that he did not have mobility in his back legs and did not respond when they pushed down hard on the paws (cats usually pull away when you do that), they would work up a recommendation to see if something happened to his back ect. Okay, I could deal with that. I could make him little kitty diapers and a kitty wheely so he could still get around if needed. I had no idea how anything could have happened to his back, but if it did, well we could make the best of it.
It was only a few minutes later that they came in to tell us that he had suddenly taken a turn. He was struggling to breath, stretching his neck, and a variety of other things that are not normal for cats. They put a full O2 mask on him and were trying to get him more settled again so we could see how things would go. Everything went by in a blur from there. The short of it was that while the o2 was making him a little more comfortable it wasn’t really helping. They brought me back to him. My sweet boy with his head in an o2 mask. I petted him so gently and whispered through my tears. He told me then, his fight was over. It was time for him to leave me for now, but we would see one another again someday across the rainbow bridge. I could feel my heart shattering into a thousand tiny pieces, but I had to do the right thing for him, my duty as his Mom, the final duty. I told the vet that I would like him not to be in pain any longer. She agreed with my choice and went over things with me with how suddenly he had gotten worse. It was a straddle thrombosis. Likely a small part of clot had broken off, which started his not feeling well, slowly blocking the blood flow to his legs and that’s when I saw him take the turn that he did. The rest of the clot likely broke free once he was at the ER vet. She assured me that it is very hard nearly impossible to catch a Saddle thrombosis, that even if you do there are no guarantees. That saddle thrombosis is essentially a cat owner’s worst nightmare. Assuring me again we were doing the right thing for him.
I went back to sit in the room and wait. They placed the catheter in his leg and brought my sweet boy to me wrapped in his blanket and his towel from home. He could smell his pride and his pack. Pash pash was a kitty who walked in two worlds, he was a member of the cat pride, but also fully accepted by the dog pack. I cradled him close like a baby and I talked to him softly. I told him how much I loved him, how much he had brought sunshine into my life, to everyone’s life. I assured him that I would see him again and that soon he would feel better. Everyone said their final goodbyes to our sweet boy.
The vet tech came in and quietly asked if we were ready. I was about to say yes and then I looked down. My Pash pash had gone motionless, his eyes fixed he had passed in my arms. The vet tech took him from me and called the vet in. There was a rather awkward long pause that stretched on. Finally the vet said he had a very faint heart beat and they would still issue the shot to ease his passing. I didn’t argue with them about it, placed my hand on him as they issued the shot and kissed him goodbye. Pash pash was the kind of kitty who would prefer to be buried then cremated and they gently took him back to place in a coffin they had.
Once the nice vet staff left, we all looked around at each other. Eyes full of tears and couldn’t help but chuckle a little bit. Why? Because I hate to say it, but I have been with enough of my sweet babies as they cross and Pash Pash had left while he was in my arms. I think the vet was just trying to save an awkward situation, being as they had already run our bank card for the shot. I do not blame them for it, maybe I am wrong, but Pasha was a little mischief maker and it seems so like him to have made a mischievous exit, beating the vet to the punch and making things a little bit awkward. It really was just SO him.
They kindly brought his little coffin to us they had placed his blanket in with him as I asked. We all started walking out and the door wouldn’t open. Cue me glancing down to the box I held in my arms. Mischievous little man at it again. Awkward situation. Someone came and let us out and we all piled into the car. Once on the road the laughter started again. It was one of those situations where if we didn’t laugh we would end up crying. Pasha would have wanted us to laugh, he liked laughter. Sharing memories of some of the silly things he has done helped. My heart is still shattered. I cry more than I laugh right now, I am grieving. I know I am firmly stuck in grief. He was my baby.
I also know that eventually the pain will lessen. I will glue my heart back together. Life carries on. I will always carry my sweet boy with me. He has left a deep paw print on my heart. He is buried under a tree he enjoyed playing around. I will see him again someday and I will be happy to see him again. For now. I grieve.
A new year dawns and her come the meme’s again. I let them fall away last year, but I fully plan on bringing them back. It is a bad day today, my pash pash kitty has taken ill and we don’t yet know why. He was fine one second and then he wasn’t. Hopefully once they open the vet will have some answers for us. In the meantime, as I wait with worried anxiety, however, I bring this meme back. I use this song because Pash pash has always enjoyed it and it calms me right now as much as it calms him. Here is hoping that the vet will have a simple answer. The song does also just seem to fit the entire situation as well.
While I won’t be posting the Saturday Sanc today, I wanted to announce that I would be bringing it back. On this eve were we say goodbye to 2016 a year that was not totally fantastic and we step in to 2017 hoping for a better year. I am not one who makes resolutions like many I try to make goals instead. One of my goals for 2017 is to get back into my blogging more. I have always enjoyed blogging and the stress of the last year has taken me away from some of the enjoyment.
It is time to take some of that enjoyment back. Work is an important thing and so is being there for other people. However, there comes a point where one must find a better balance and I know I need to find a better balance in 2017. In many parts of the world the new year is already here while in my part of the world there is but a few hours left. I am ready to see 2016 gone, like many are no doubt.
While we can never fully just shake off the things that have happened purely because a calendar date changes we can try to move forward with hope and a new lightness in our hearts. Something new always gives us a bit of hope. I really hope 2017 will be better, kinder if nothing else.
So here we go, stepping into the new year and I fully plan to make a goal of blogging more again. Here and at my other places. In the meantime, I am going to enjoy a bit of a tasty Scottish man for the rest of the year, while pondering if I should redo the theme on this blog for the new year as well.
I can’t help but wonder if this is what a nervous breakdown looks like. I have been stressed for a long while now. I am one of those people who is very good at hiding things to the general people and just saying I am fine and moving on. But, everything has a breaking point right? I mean, even the strongest of substances will eventually break down, even if it is just because the passage of time running over you. I have had joyous moments don’t get me wrong, and some of the things stressing me, I wouldn’t change for a thing because they also bring me joy. Other things, however well other things I would change. I just read an article after a particularly bad hour (oh, I will get to that) that says 7 signs you might be headed towards a nervous breakdown. I ticked 6 out of the 7 boxes. I would say that is a pretty damn high number of things. Looking at how little I have been blogging lately and even the 3 different drafts I started on this blog and haven’t bothered to finish up and post. Sad right?
Maybe it is just the holidays catching up with me (I am really not a fan of this time of year, even though I try), maybe it is because I know I won’t get my gifts ready in time and they will be late this year for some. Maybe it is the state of the world, maybe it is because I pretty much work non stop and maybe it is just all of it combined. But I seriously would like to either sit in the middle of the floor and scream or climb into bed for a week and sleep or maybe both. Seems like a good idea to me.
So after another trying day of the usual I then again had to shoulder the bulk of a friend’s mental illness. Now don’t get me wrong, I am a friend and I am someone who will bend over backwards and break for my friends. I don’t want it to seem like I am some uncaring beotch. But it is very trying when you are always the one shouldering the problems for people and you never get a chance to use their shoulders in return. I don’t want a pity party, but more often than not I am the one who shoulders it all and gets crushed into the mud while those who take take take and heave their burden upon me don’t offer a hand to help me up from the mud they have crushed me in.
I have openly told those who keep heaping on my shoulders that I don’t want to sound selfish, but I am hitting a wall where I can’t shoulder anymore. I need to deal with my own anxiety and problems for a little bit and it would be nice if I got some help from them as I have given them. It feels as if it is falling upon deaf ears. Especially today.
Another long dealing with another persons mental illness as I stand there trying to reel in my own anxiety, my own issues and trouble that I have been having. Once everything has been off loaded the other party goes dark, locked away in a bubble where I don’t hear from them unless there is something else wrong for me to fix. Safe and sound and warm and totally unaware as I suffocate in the mud their problems and my problems have shoved me down into.
The course of events that happened, aren’t overly terrible they aren’t even out of the ordinary for me in the course of a day. But, I have been sobbing about it for 2 hours and still am even as I type this post out. I am not sure why I am making the post and if I may not even post it, but writing can often times help me find my center again, to gather the shreds of myself up enough to carry on behind the mask of I am fine. Because even if I am not fine, everyone else has bigger problems than me and I have to turn my shoulders again for them to use. Taurus the bull is my zodiac sign, loyal, loving, stubborn yes too.. and a beast of burden it can often feel like.
As I sat down trying to finish a crochet order so I could move on to finishing crochet Christmas presents when my beautiful Senior cat Dutchy demanded to be fed. This is not a new thing and I happily feed her. For the last 4 years she has been on a wet food only diet as first her gums and then her teeth got too sensitive for kibble. I do not mind feeding her, even when she is yelling at me 16 years old, she is my beautiful girl, part of my strength I would do anything for her. Sadly, this time her yelling is what set off events.
I collected the usual horde of followers that comes along when they know she is being fed and kicked them out. Fed my sweet girl and headed back to work on the project I NEED to finish while she ate. Alas, that was not to be. As soon as my rear end hit the bed, Cubby bless his sweet heart had what we gently call a Cubpocolypse moment. Cubby has IBS, hyperthyroid, a food allergy and frankly he just likes to eat things he isn’t supposed to, no matter how hard I try to keep him out of them he sometimes gets sneaky. So as he tried to sleep, a stinky explosion happened. Not an unusual thing that happens either. The smell was horrid as usual, but hey, at least this time it wasn’t on me! I get covered on a regular basis as he loves to sleep on me and I would never tell him not to. It is not his fault it happens, I know he feels embarrassed when it happens and who would really choose to fall asleep and then wake up covered in crap.
I couldn’t find my usual tools for clean up which started a bit of ocd shaking (yeah, I am getting some ocd habits that I am not a fan of now. Bully for me more issues) and as I looked for them the dogs nicely reminded me I was overdue for their dinner. I did a quick partial clean up of the mess and gathered up the dog bowls to get meals. I couldn’t find their winter time stew portions in the fridge and assumed there wasn’t some out for thawing luckily I keep a few nice cans when we get free cans for buying food in a stash for such occasions. I look down as I am about to scoop kibble..and one of the cats thought it was funny to pee in Olly’s dish. Fair enough, so I washed that.
Finally the food was in the bowls and all nice and mixed up. I headed back to give the dogs their dinner and add a benadryl in (last gasp of winter pollen of some kind has made Olly and Diva break out in hives) and as soon as i set the bowls down I look up and beautiful white kitty Kirk…. has two large patches of liquid explosion of Cubby fashion on him. This made me give a bit of a shout of oh for F’s sake. I mean, seriously, who wouldn’t right, I mean seriously?
Olly is sensitive and this yell made him run off away from his dinner where he then proceeded to do a nervous circuit of the house before sitting on the couch and shaking. I have to gather up his bowl so nobody else, including cat family tries to eat it, grab Kirk, who smells and is covered in poo and fetch a towel so I can wash him a bit. Yeah, you can imagine that went about as well as it sounds. I admit, I do confess I lost my temper with Olly as he circled around and around and around nearly tripping me. It is not his fault. I love Olly and I know he is a sensitive soul, who had a terrible first year of his life before getting to us and most days his nervous ticks and things don’t phase me. He is a very empathetic dog and he was only picking up on my energy right now. But breaking point was there and I yelled oh for God sake Olly stop running around and eat your dinner. That of course did nothing to help him. Nothing to help me either, I still feel guilty as sin for yelling at him. He didn’t stop or want his dinner, so I proceeded to the kitchen to wash Kirk. Why not the bathroom? Remember that is where Dutchy is having her meal. You open that door and the hun’s rush in. Safer to go to the kitchen.
Kirky is a beautiful and wonderful boy. Patient and cute as a button. He is however also a cat. I have yet to have a cat that actually LIKES a bath. Kirky is no exception. The second the water hit his tail it was like he was a savage wildcat and after I got scratched and bit he ran away. Typical right? Olly started circling faster. I rounded Kirky up again, got him cleaned off. Finally got Olly to stop running in a circle and eat his dinner. Then sit down and have a nice big cry, which hasn’t stopped. I still have to finish changing the bed from the mess that got spewed all over it. But I am frozen. I can’t make myself do it. I can’t make the leaking stop from my eyeballs and I can’t make myself finish what I need to do. Change the sheets and crochet a stinking sock. The only thing I could summon up the focus for was to write this post.
I really think this might be what a nervous breakdown looks like. I don’t like it. I don’t like it one bit. Can anyone take it away, please? Also, please pass me some super glue so I can get back to putting myself together and saying I am fine.
Besides.. with perfect timing as always..someone has just asked me to come pick them up.
I have had a bit of a tough time dealing with the election results (yeah post about that coming soon) and of course I am in the massive whirlwind of holiday crochet stuff. However, today is a day to take a breath and remember what to be thankful for. I am thankful about a great many things in my life. I hope that next year I can be even more grateful as well, because I have hope my country will stop that terrible things it is doing to the native people of Standing rock.
In the meantime I hope everyone had an enjoyable day with their family.
You have to love when clients as a freelance writer try to haggle with you. It is not the haggle that so much is a problem, but it is often how they do it. They will make it seem like they have OH so many offers to go through, and well many have lower prices so are you really that firm. Maybe they do have lots of offers and maybe some of them are for less money. However, often times when dealing with writing you get what you pay for.
This is probably just a bunch of prattle for most who are reading this. I know there are those who will understand it though. Those who have been a freelance writer and can’t help but sit and sigh or even laugh at the amounts that are sometimes offered to you. Just for giggles a couple I have had over the time include:
$20 for 30,000 words and illustrations (I am not an illustrator)
$10 for 20,000 words
$5 for 8,000 words plus a variety of other weird things
Now these are just some of the low ball offers. They of course also wanted each item to be perfect in grammar and formatted and everything else. It is utterly laughable that they thought they could get these prices, sadly there was likely someone, somewhere who did it because they really needed the money. I wish I could say they just got laughed at and the work wasn’t done. Sadly, reality says they likely did get it done, maybe not all of them. The part I do have a good giggle about however, is the fact that the work they did get for that price was likely not very good.
Most writers in freelance world offer VERY reasonable rates, many in fact are more than reasonable to be competitive in the market place. The going rate on most big platforms these days seems to be $1 per 100 words, that is more than reasonable because that is not the going rate outside of these platforms. Yet still you get some who want more work for less. It gets even funnier when they are the one who approach you, knowing your rates and then try to hawk you down by saying, “Well, I have so many other applicants.” writers need to learn to say, okay I hope they work out for you.
Freelance writers need to start demanding they get paid fairly for their work. At the very least that they get paid the rate they have clearly listed if you come to them. If all freelancers would stick together on this, the ball would be in their court. We would see less low balling and clients would eventually have to buckle and pay fair or not have work done.
This little ramble, rant brought to you by.. hearing a story from a friend about being low balled yet again by prospective clients.