Monday, January 31, 2011

The 90s: That says it all.

Gather around, children. Paul has a few stories about the 90s and these are a little tough to take, except for the first one.
So there I was, married and with a house full of people on December 31, 1989, so drunk I couldn't even see straight with one eye closed. We were all there to scream "Happy New Decade", when the clock hit midnight. But what was I doing at that exact moment? Outside, killing the grass (old skool southern speak for "Drunken puke"). Maybe that was a sign of how the decade would go, but I'll never be able to say for a fact. What I do know is that the 90s were the best and some of the worst times of my life.
While this is going to be a downer of a post, realize that I'm only highlighting just a few of the bad times and will move on to better days in the next one. You don't have to believe what I'm going to say, but again...I don't have a reason to lie. There are a few people who know the whole truths behind what I'm telling and I'm not far from being quite centered with all the hindsight.
I had already begun messing around on my wife with a guy who my inner circle knew, but no one knew about he and I at the time. Do I regret it? Of course. Do I need to wish for turning the clock back? Of course not, because it taught me to focus on something other than anatomy. By the time we were able to actually move in together and give the relationship a go, the new had worn off and the real had begun to sink in. Little did either of us realize at the time that it was realllly NOT supposed to be he and I who attempted to be a couple. We tried to kill each other, literally. On October 30, 1993, I almost succeeded in killing him. Another bash of his head through the wall and he could've ended up hitting a stud that held the walls up. Considering that he had a steel plate in the back of his head, it already put him at a disadvantage. He's lucky, many times over. He now carries enough humility to apologize for what all stunts he pulled. Sorry: Not going there. Unfortunately, he will never change. Fortunately, I don't go back and eat where I had no choice but to take a shit and walk away.
Incase you're wondering where the story is about how and why I ended up living in my car, etc, that's an entirely different post within itself. You'll have to wait. So, onward....
My better half's name is Jack, incase I didn't mention it. I will quickly go over his ex (Ron): Rather than take up 15 seperate blog posts over that one, I'll try making it easy.
He threatened Jack's life once, then threatened mine and Jack's together on a different occasion, after we moved to San Jose. That's when I blew my stack and Ron's boyfriend called 911, then stayed crouched up in one of the recliners to watch everything unfold. After much banter and lies from Ron, I told a sheriff deputy, "If he comes back in this house, I'll kill him and I'm not kidding you one bit." The deputy informed me that if I said it again, he would have to cuff me and charge me to which I responded, "Then lock me up, because it's a crime to put up with that bullshit for another minute, let alone another night."
He was escorted back through the house, deputy on each side, and allowed to pack one box of belongings. From there, he left and made it back to Alabama in 2 days (You read that correctly-2 days). Within less than 1 month (June 13, 1995, to be exact), he was found dead in his car at a TVA Dam. It was determined he had been there for 3 days and no one noticed. It was further determined that he took appx 1 months supply of Lopressor (Blood pressure medication), 1 months supply of Amitriptylene (Tricyclic antidepressant), somehow administered 14 CCs of insulin to himself, and the 15th was still in the bottle, found in the floorboard. I'll leave the other visuals to your imagination because I would prefer not to go any further. Incase you're wondering, yes I do have the death certificate which clearly states the cause of death.
Jack: The beginning of Jack's medical hell began on the night of October 12, 1997 at 10:33 PM. I remember it that well. Prior to that, no indicator of bad health or anything bad on the horizon was known of or indicated by a physician. On that night, he suffered a heart attack and stroke, back to back. He had to have a triple bypass. 2 days after the bypass, he had to be rushed back to the O.R. to remove a blood clot that could have easily killed him, after everything that was already done to save his life. Because of the medical trauma, a sterile plastic box was placed over most of his body and I mean from above the head down to his ankles. The only holes in that box were for drainage tubes and the wiring for readouts. I couldn't offer any comfort. He couldn't hear me because he was so out of it. The first 2 times he tried to regain consciousness, no one was in the room to let him know that a tube was doing the breathing for him (2 nurses were assigned to be IN the room at all times, BTW). Both times, he suffered massive anxiety attacks and somehow had the ability to bang on that box until a nurse came in and put him right back out with a shot of Xanax. The 3rd time, however, I was in there and so was the surgeon who performed the bypass. Sure enough, out came the breathing tube and on came the healing process, which was sheer hell and beyond. Several people were fired over that, and all I will say is GOOD!
Then came a fate almost as nasty, about one year later. IBM found out (somehow) about Jack's medical troubles. They then took aim at the mainframe contract which we had in place with a trucking company in Sterling Heights, Michigan. IBM came in with what was probably a half million dollar digital mainframe (in those days), underbid mine and Jack's contract by more than 50% (ending dollar amount was less than forty thousand a year), and agreed to take our mainframe out then hook everything about theirs up for free. Why? Because Jack had several beefs with IBM from the 1970s, when he worked for Time-Life and was well within his rights to verbally smack them around for being cheap and stupid, along with having a few reps replaced for being mouthy when push came to shove.
Corporations such as IBM have memories that never end, accounts that are seemingly bottomless, and if they want to take away your business and clientele you can bet they will do it. Jack and I are living proof that it can and will happen. They took us down to where we could not get up, and had no choice but to move back to the southeast, where living was cheaper. We didn't want to do it, but by the time it was all said and done, the decision was made....that is, unless we really wanted to live in a trailer park and I'll say it quickly: LIKE HELL I'll live in a trailer park, let alone would he and I have done so. I would be safer at a Motel 6, in the middle of a ghetto. Been there.
OK-I think that's enough bad highlighting of the 90s, at least for now. If something bad from this decade gets mentioned beyond here, know that it's not because I want to bring everyone down with sad 'woe is me' stories. It's like I wrote on the very first post; I have a lot to say, and I have no reason to lie. I also said I hope this blog doesn't bore you. If a couple of postings of bad things bores you, I wouldn't recommend watching 50% of most comedy movies because even they contain bad things. If anything, it's to reiterate that I have been around and I'm not a fool. I know what I know, and it's mostly from experience. Rather than hide under a rock, I choose to speak of those experiences and see if anyone has been through anything similar. If not, it's ok. I'm not looking to outdo your situation. I'm simply wondering who can relate.

Uncle, I'm not impressed.

Feeling uninspired, and because Mondays can be rather dismal...this one's for you, Uncle.
The 'feel good' approach to life typically doesn't pay off, in the long run. I now have an uncle who died a young 65 years old as proof, as if enough proof within both sides of my family didn't already exist.
The man (If we want to call him that) could not handle anything that didn't make him drunk, stoned, dance, bank bound or have an orgasm. Life which had an unpleasant quality was an enemy, when it needed to be taken as a challenge.
This man, whose father ran off and left MY father, his sister, and their mother working in a shipyard in Georgia during the World War II era, should have had the common sense to know that in life, you get to deal with shit because that's part of what fertilizes growth within everything from bountiful harvests to fruitful and balanced lives. Did he bother to apply the lessons his mother endured? Of course not, and his offspring are no better. If anything, they're worse.
His children also stumbled through life unaware that the feel good only approach would ultimately affect them as well, and affect it certainly has. The son is strung out on meth (I doubt that's all), and the daughter couldn't care less about anything or anyone unless someone has something which will profit her, or give her an easy route to doing the minimal, if that much, and receiving everything she didn't earn.
This uncle threw away his health over booze, an awesome job over another guy's wife who ended up screwing another co-worker besides just him, tossed a plumbing business out the window because it didn't grow to an overnight sensation to make him immediately rich, and broke off a relationship with someone who actually wanted to truly love him, marry him, and grow old with him. I just don't get it.
Everyone on this earth has their faults, so don't think I'm letting myself off the hook for anything. But, one would think that with an upbringing such as his, and military training (which means emotionally tearing down and rebuilding), and a mechanical mind that I could only dream of would have at least sustained him to be somewhat content. What the hell is wrong with people who can never seem to see the forest for the trees?
To my knowledge, no one ever said there was a real mental disconnect. Having several of my own, I think someone missed an opportunity to at least try a few medications and cognitive behavioral therapy sessions....and that's at the very least.
The only silver lining: My brother and sister, as teenagers, took their cars to him every time they fucked something up and needed him to smooth the problem out before my parents could catch wind of it. On the other hand, one morning I was driving into town and guess who I saw on the side of a road with chain and hook at the ready? Uncle, of course. When I pulled over, he immediately recognized my car. He just stood there, shaking his head with a smirk on his face. As soon as I got out of my car and closed the door, his words (which I can still hear) were, "Well, I guess this was life's way of paying me back for all I've done."
Ironic, when you consider his life as a whole. Outside the family, only a few really liked him and no one really loved him. For that, the life ended on an empty note. How sad.
RIP, Uncle....

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Narcolepsy: A hate story

Does anyone else deal with this shit? Narcolepsy is scary!
The first time I can recall this happening to me was in early 1994, while driving down a 4 lane highway with 3 other people in the car. We were all stoned out of our minds (as usual, in those days), the stereo was blaring, everyone was blabbing away, giggling, etc, so no one was aware that even though I was using my left arm and hand to keep my head positioned in place, it wasn't working out.

What I began seeing is something similar to a surrealistic Dali painting, but not in the common 'chromableed' acid form (LSD is an entirely different topic, and yes...we will certainly go there as well, some day). The highway then began to have a slight diagonal appearence, sort of like the first time I tried using Buspar for my panic attacks, but had not been prescribed as of yet (Meds are another topic we will cover, and there will be MANY posts for that).

By the time my vehicle began to run across the devices in the road which give a slight scrubbing and 'hum' sound, underneath, I did snap back just in time to ease the car back into a lane and at the same rate of speed. Luckily, all passengers barely noticed anything. In fact, I told them I thought that part of my cigarette 'cherry' had landed on the floorboard....and of course, everyone in the car believed it. Only after arriving back at a friend's house, safely, did I actually admit what had happened. The only female of the 3 passengers asked why I didn't say something and pull over. I told her that whatever happened, I couldn't talk and had basically passed out. She didn't believe me, of course...not because she was looking to make fun of me, but because she was simply unaware of what took place. So was I. It freaked me out, and I can still remember it well.

If there is one thing I have always prided myself on, it's my driving. I learned to drive from my father who, in my opinion, was one of the best. That incident truly upset me, but it was just a sign of many incidents to come and much worse, I might add.

Several years later, sometime in the early '00s, I remember trying to walk out of the bathroom. Suddenly, everything on the walls began to appear as if they were on the ceiling. My legs and feet became all but useless. My only saving grace was my arms and hands. I placed my hands on what still looked to be on the ceiling, which confused my mind that much further. By instinct, I barely remembered which direction the hallway was located on, so I attempted to take one step in that direction, only to fall on my side. Immediately, I tried to stand up and immediately fell again. I continued those steps until finally reaching my bed. Keep in mind that my bed has a 33 inch drop, which meant that my body took the act of getting in that bed as climbing a mountain.....but somehow, I managed to get in it.

Plenty of you who are reading this know very well that I'm a former drug addict and alcoholic. Are those to blame? I don't know. Stress could also cause it, and so could an imbalance of Circadian Rhythm.

My dumb ass also learned the hard way not to even try sitting straight up in bed with a cigarette. Yep, I burned a nasty hole in a perfectly made quilt from the 40s which was made out of squares from the old flour and sugar sacks from back in the day. Yes, I still have the quilt. That will be a reminder to never, EVER, smoke in bed again. This happened in 2002, and I haven't dared to put an ashtray anywhere near my bedroom since that incident.

I'm aware of a classmate who used to be a bar manager of a restaurant where I currently reside (Knoxville, Tennessee). She said there was a nightly customer who kept his hands on the bar a certain way, to where if he suddenly 'passed out' (as she called it), his head would at least have a chance to land on his hands instead of the bar. OK...First of all, why was she serving him alcohol when she knew he had that condition? Second: Alcohol may be legal, but isn't there some type of grey area where a bar manager's moral compass should kick in and say, " know, I really shouldn't be serving this guy anything else."? Is it just me, or did this chick really screw the pooch when it came to watching out for that man's best interest? Granted, he knew he had the condition because he told her what it was and therefore, he knew the potential hazards. But, didn't anyone else of authority in that restaurant see it, night after night? Shouldn't THEY have done something about it, or at least decided on a limit of drinks which could be served to this man? For me, 2 would have been the limit.

My incidents of Narcolepsy have sadly increased since Jack (My late better half) had become so sick and was in the hospital for the 90 days prior to his passing away. They have only become worse since then. Over the past 2 weeks, in fact, I have slept more nights in my recliner than in my own bed which might be 20 paces away from said recliner. I often wake up with the remote for the tv, or even the cell phone, at my feet or trying to creep under my lap. A couple of times, I have found my slippers off my feet and sitting in odd locations in proximity to where my feet are.

All I can do is hope that the frequency of these episodes will begin subsiding (again) after all these years. I certainly don't need that popping up so frequently, again. Also, I can't take Provigil because of the screaming headache it gives me. And, my body hates medical grade amphetamines of any kind.

We will see what happens. If you know of someone with this condition, do not take it as a joke and try not to mentally micromanage what may be going on. Just help that person either pull off the road, get down the hallway toward his/her bed (take away any potential cigarettes AND ashtrays), and ask about potential drug or alcohol usage. Check into what medications may be currently used. For some, depending on what meds, they can certainly exacerbate the problem.

ALWAYS check on your friends. You never know what could happen, or may happen, if you don't.

♥~Peace and Love to all~♥

Friday, January 28, 2011

Don't touch me! (A quick summary)

The title speaks for itself, yes? Perhaps I should explain a little better....

I am a survivor of child molestation who also happens to now be, at age 42, an Agnostic gay widow with a preexisting physical and mental disorder (or 3), with plenty to say.

That's right: I have PTSD, Panic Disorder, Major Depression, Ulnar Neuropathy, Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy, my Lumbar region is trashed, and my much better half passed away on December 9, 2010. To put it mildly, I'm a wreck who has no idea (yet) what it means to grieve.
I'm quite uncertain that the full reality of what all happened has set in, or that it ever will. I only know what I do from a vivid memory of perhaps too much, but it's perfect fodder for letting the world know that I don't fit in and never have. Either way, I'm not suicidal. So, I'm here whether or not you dare to 'touch me' and read my blog. I hope you will. People tend to enjoy my nuttiness, though I fully realize that I can freak people out with no warning, whatsoever. It's ok; I can assure you, I do take my meds as prescribed and nothing more unless a last resort is required.

Why the "Unworthy freak" portion of my blog title: I attempted to establish at least a verbal connection with a group of certain gay widowers on here, only to be completely ignored. It's true that my 'setting' isn't as glamorous as others who are now sitting pretty. Yet, they still have my full sympathy. All I have is a physical estate. My funds are minimal. Eventually, I will get to that...oh but don't you worry, we will indeed go there. I have lots to say. There are stories to tell, a'plenty and be assured that I wouldn't waste my time with lies. So, be forewarned: Whether or not you believe a word I say is moot. I have no reason to lie about anything.

"OK-What will you do now?", one or more of you may ask. Hey, your guess is as good or perhaps even better than mine. Noting that I've never jumped into these waters before, I have a feeling that I'll be swimming in them for a very long time to come. But, this is the hand I was dealt...for whatever reason.

I have one of two choices which I transposed from the original: Swim or sink. I have been on the receiving end of 'sink'. Here is an example of what it's like to sink after a failed 'straight' marriage while in my early twenties, and this took place in the early 90s:

Trust me when I tell you that it's highly overrated to be 6 feet tall, living in a 1983 Pontiac Sunbird with vinyl seats, and during the winter. It doesn't matter that this happened in the southeastern region. Cold as hell is cold as hell.

Imagine waking up and having to drive around in your car for at least 15 minutes or so just to get your hands and face to remotely begin thawing. After you attempt to go there, imagine getting 'showered up' inside of a convenient store bathroom (and I'm talking a tiny bathroom sink for my hair and entire body) every single morning, just to show up for work without stinking everyone out of the building. I did exactly that. My clean clothes (when I had them) stayed in the trunk.

I could have moved in with my parents, but my philosophy at the time was, "They put up with enough of my shit, growing up. Why on earth do they deserve to be put through it, again?" No, they had no idea I was living in the car, and I made sure of it. Wild days, they were.

"Oh my god! Were you on drugs???", one or more of you may ask. The short answer is yes, but if YOU ended up living in YOUR car during the winter with only a ragged bedspread to cover you and only a Toy Poodle as a foot warmer, wouldn't YOU have been on drugs? Seriously, think about that for a minute. How long could you have withstood a condition such as that without an overwhelming desire to go so numb that you stopped caring just how shitty things had become? You're free to judge, but trust me when I say that you really should try living that life before doing so. Only then can you speak from experience.

Indeed, this unworthy freak has been around and has seen plenty: Too much for most, but as I have already noted, there is plenty to say. I doubt this blog will bore you, but I also hope it doesn't scare you away.

Realize that some of us actually DID break the mold and have come out the other side very proud of it. Those of us who have should be more willing to speak up. Since I can't do that for anyone else, I'll gladly tend to, and report on my own little unworthy freak of an existence.

This blog will consist of just about every subject you can imagine, and will be an emotional roller coaster at times. One day triumph, and the next a tragedy. But, that's the way life can be...or at least mine is.

Stay tuned, folks. Here's hoping I don't disappoint.

♥~Peace and Love to all~♥