Getting Better In Da Hood

I’m not one for making New Year resolutions these days, but I did have one goal in mind for this blog in 2021 — post more. And here we are, almost halfway through the month, and nada. That changes today.

(Not the “posting more” part, because while I still intend to do that, who knows with me, but there being “nada” on this blog for 2021 changes.)

Off we go.

First, I’m going to address my last post — the one where I admitted to saying one of the cringiest things ever and causing myself not to get the med change I needed at the time. (It’s All Good In Da Hood, if you missed it.)

So, I did end up reaching out to my psychiatrist. Over the course of two days, I drafted an email that I deemed worthy of sending. (I wasn’t sitting there for two days, obviously, but I had to keep going back to it and fine-tune the email so that I made sure I got my issues across without a) sounding cringy and b) sounding like I needed to be committed.) I got a response pretty quickly and then a phone call the next day where we discussed a medication adjustment.

I’m now the proud owner of a bottle of Lexapro. It’s an SSRI indicated for depression and anxiety. (And not to be taken by itself if you have bipolar disorder, because yikes. Works well with a mood stabilizer, though.)

After some time on that, I seriously feel like a weight has been lifted off my chest. I am much calmer, far less cranky/irritable, and am generally in pretty good spirits. (And considering the absolute SHITSTORM going on in the U.S. over the past week, feeling calmer is saying something.) The few anxiety attacks I’ve had have been less intense, too.

While I’m doing better, I am sad to report that BG is not. She has been having some severe anxiety lately, which means a ton of meltdowns. She was bitten by my MIL’s dog, so some of it is tied to that. And then there was Christmas and starting back school, so with all of that bleeding into each other, things have been difficult for her at times.

I talked about it with her occupational therapist last week, and I swear, this chick is an absolute godsend. Her advice has been on point, plus she has been sending me some resources to help with BG and shifted the focus of their last two appointments to coping strategies, identifying emotions, that sort of thing. She’s also helping us find a child therapist. We’re hoping to find a therapist who has experience with girls on the autism spectrum.

I put up some dry erase vinyl sheets in the kitchen/living room area with a visual schedule for different parts of the day for BG. Her OT mentioned how helpful she thought that’d be. And while it is very helpful,  BG thinks that anything not on that schedule means “it ain’t happening for anybody.” I had to run errands after school yesterday and planned to leave shortly after BG got home. (I wasn’t taking her with me.)

“The schedule doesn’t say ‘Target’ on it,” BG informed me. “So you can’t go.”

Lawd.

I went after hanging out with her for a while, which she wasn’t very happy about. My husband said she repeatedly asked when I was going to be back while I was gone. (I’ve noticed a little separation anxiety lately, too.) The child ended up tracking my location on the iPhone Find Me app to see where I was and how long it would take me to get home.

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Now for the boy…he’ll be a teenager in a few weeks. Let me tell ya — little boys can get stinky. Not-so-little-boys? They have a funk that smells like onions and sweaty socks. GAG.

He has been doing well. He got a few video games for Christmas, so that’s his focus right now. He mentioned his bestie starting virtual and having a math class with him, which he’s ecstatic over.

“We get to text each other during the class and make fun of the teacher.”

His face totally lights up talking about her, too, so I wonder if that best friend territory will end up in crush territory for him. She came to his birthday party last year, and it was pretty obvious she was in the latter territory.

My husband is doing well, too. He was recently recruited for a new role in his company and found out he got it. It’s a pretty big pay bump and work he’s excited about doing, so 2021 is off to a good start for him in that respect! We are going to celebrate on Saturday night with steaks and good booze. (At home, of course.)

How is your year going so far?

All Good In Da Hood

I saw my psychiatrist earlier this month, for the first time since the beginning of the year. I went in armed with a list of things I wanted to talk about on my phone, but still blanked. Deer-in-headlights, “Things are good. Just a bit of anxiety. All good in da hood.”

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No, I’m not fucking kidding on that last sentence. I have uttered that sentence more times than I care to admit to doctors because of being nervous or whatever. Some of y’all know me beyond the blog and get that this is way more awkward than it sounds. Seriously, I almost die a little inside every time I say this. I should probably ask for a note to be added to my chart on this. “When patient states ‘It’s all good in da hood,’ IT’S PROBABLY NOT.”

So, my anxiety medication was changed to a different as-needed med. It doesn’t make me drowsy, which is a plus, but it doesn’t really help much, which is a negative.

Maybe I’ll just email him.

“So…following up from my last appointment — the anxiety medication sucks. I think we need to discuss adjusting my other medication because — NAH, IT’S ALL GOOD IN DA HOOD.” 

My practice email won’t even let me not say this.

I had a medication screw up last week. I realized Sunday night that I missed two days of my meds in a row. I forgot one night (which is surprising, as I’ve only unintentionally missed taking the med once in three years) and fell asleep on the couch the other night and missed it. (I may have had a few drinks on that one.) I was feeling off as fuck, too. It clicked when I was checking to see if I needed a refill before Christmas and then saw what I had left vs. the refill date. OOPS. Considering one of the meds is an anti-seizure med that can…drumroll…cause seizures if you skip taking it (regardless of whether you’re prone to them), I’m lucky it wasn’t more than just feeling off.

I told my friend about it, and she was like, “Yeah, I was wondering. You were getting all up in your emotions, and you NEVER do that.”

That makes me wonder just how closed off I am when one never sees their best friend with a history of depression, severe anxiety, and bipolar 2 get up in her emotions.

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That they do.

In other news that is good-in-da-hood but in a non-psych way, we found a new show. I know y’all have been waiting on pins and needs to find out what the Anxious fam was gonna binge next. This one is Billions on Showtime. (Thank you Amazon for giving me a month of Showtime for 99 cents.) It’s about some dude who runs a hedge fund and is getting investigated and shit. It sounds boring. After the first couple of episodes, I was torn because the characters were interesting, but words like hedge fund, stock market, shorting stock, SEC (not the football conference), and the such are so boring.

It didn’t have that effect on my husband, who is interested in financial stuff by way of his profession (and he loves talking about it, woe is me, and double woe is me when I asked him what the heck a hedge fund even is). Some of the boring finance talk died down a little, though, and I am hooked. It helps that it has actors from three shows I love (Homeland, Sons of Anarchy, and Breaking Bad). If you have Prime and need a show, go see if you can get Showtime for 99 cents and try it out.

Okay, it’s bedtime and the kids are fighting, and it’s not good in da hood at the moment, so I’m gonna wrap it up.

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Daily Writing Prompt: It Took So Long To Leave…

Today’s prompt:

It took so long to leave because…

of my dad.

You have to plan carefully when visiting my dad’s house if you have somewhere else to go. Especially at holidays. If he says “We’re carving the turkey at 1:00,” what that really means is “I’m probably going to stick it in the fryer at 1:30. It’ll be done by 2:30, but has to sit and cool a while, so we’ll probably eat at 3:00.” His turkey is amazing and worth it, but my MIL usually starts her dinner promptly at 5:00, and it that leaves us at eating and running. (Leaving an hour after eating the meal is absolutely “running” to my family. You’ve gotta sit and chat a while and then have dessert and chat some more.)

Back when we’d meet at his house to go out to a restaurant on the weekend on occasion, he’d tell us, “Meet here at 6:00. I’ll be ready.” Nah. He was (and I assume still is, but we haven’t been over there since early March) always messy from working on something outside, in torn jeans, a white t-shirt that was no longer white and should’ve been tossed years ago, and dad sneakers. So our choices would be “wait 45 minutes for Dad to get ready” (which isn’t so bad if you don’t have hangry kids) or “let’s go somewhere Dad can go dressed like this.” Not that the last part really matters anyway.

That’s better than when I was a kid. When I was young, we’d have to wait for him to come up from the pasture, and back then he cared more about his appearance, so we’d wait for the shower, too. And sometimes if he knew we had to leave somewhere at a certain time, he’d disappear about 10 minutes beforehand saying he had something to do that would take five minutes. Five minutes would quickly turn into an hour.

I’m a stickler for being punctual, and my dad’s lack of being aware of time often drives me nuts. My husband is the same way. My son is also the same way, hence racking up a record number of tardies in elementary school. BG is usually good about doing what she needs to get out the door at a certain time, thankfully.

It also took so long to leave because of the goodbyes.

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Basically this except, “One does not simply leave my father’s house.”

There’s no going, “Well, I’ve enjoyed the visit. Love you and talk to you later this week.” If you do that or hug everyone present any less than five times, then someone must be mad or sick. By the time you’ve said your goodbyes and given hugs multiple times, plus talked about the other random things that popped up, you’ve probably left 30-45 minutes later than planned.

I’ll tell you, I’ve had my problems with my dad over the years. Some major ones at times and some minor ones still. But I hope when my kids are adults that they say it took so long to leave because of good stuff like that. (That last paragraph, not the parts where leaving the house to go eat took forever lol.)

About Anxious Mom, As Narrated By Morgan Freeman

While updating my About Me page, I decided to have a little fun with it. And since there has been an influx of new followers, I thought I’d share that page as a blog post. Welcome aboard, new folks.


Per the blog post title, you should read this in Morgan Freeman’s voice. 

Anxious Mom, who is known as “Mommy,” “Mom,” or “Momo” by her children, is a 30-something woman who resides in the Deep South. (And by “resides,” we mean “suffers” due to the unbearable heat and humidity.) She has two heathens — a son in middle school and a daughter in kindergarten. When the children aren’t busy tormenting each other, they torture their mother in ways only children can.

There are many things Anxious Mom enjoys doing in her spare time. If you ask her directly, she’d probably tell you that she loves reading and doing intellectual activities such as going to the museum. If you observe her in her habitat, however, you’ll find that she mostly watches shows on Netflix and plays games in her downtime. She is particularly fond of comedies, including The Office, Parks and Rec, Friends, and Brooklyn Nine-Nine. She has jokingly said that liking one of those shows is required to be friends with her, but through careful observation, we have learned it is not, in fact, a joke.

If you asked Anxious Mom about her background, she’d tell you that she did a brief stint as a teacher before becoming a stay-at-home-mom. Since then, she has done freelance work part-time, including providing content writing and editing services. Her primary job, however, is working as a chauffeur. This is where she truly excels in life, as she has a penchant for punctuality (as long as her children and husband don’t intervene) and safety. The mother, who we suspect was a hall monitor in another life, is proud of having never gotten a speeding ticket. She does, however, fill her swear jar every other day thanks to her time on the road, so she isn’t as goody-two-shoes as she seems.

As you can see, Anxious Mom is a blogger. Some people call her a mommy blogger, and that irritates her greatly. “I am a mom who blogs,” she maintains, as though there is truly a difference. She has blogged for five years and writes about herself and her family. When she first started blogging, she wrote a lot about her mental health, and it’s suspected that she’ll do so again. The rapidly-approaching-middle-age mother is also fond of writing blog posts where she rants about meaningless topics.

This concludes our glimpse into the life Anxious Mom. You can read her other blog posts or follow her on Instagram for other mundane insights into her life.

Home Alone

Y’all remember how busy my June was? Well, it was riddled with stomach bugs, too. I guess that’s the price you pay when the kids a) go to camps and b) constantly have their hands in their mouths. They pick up everything.

The last bug didn’t involve puke or diarrhea, so that was nice at least. It involved fevers, headaches, earaches, muscle cramps, and a sore throat and lasted a few days. And now that I’ve written that out, I realize it sounds a lot like the flu. Do people get the flu in the summer? I’ve never heard of it, but if anyone would get that, it’d be my two.

The girl won a free stay at a themed hotel/water park near us, so that was planned for Sunday. Unfortunately for me, a migraine hit on Saturday, and then I woke up in the middle of the night with a fever and the absolute worst headache I’ve had in my life. The rational part of my brain knew it had to be a double whammy of the migraine and their bug, but the non-rational part (which tends to be a big part at times) was convinced I was gonna die. When I had that cochlear implant surgery, they told me there is an increased risk of meningitis, so I was freaking out a bit. WebMD suggested a brain hemorrhage, by the way. I don’t know why I even bother with that site.

I woke my husband up after I took my temperature and told him I might be dying. He said “Sorry” and went back to sleep. So in between groaning over my head throbbing, I silently fumed at him.

I stayed home from the trip. Hearing the girl scream at the top of her lungs in the other room made my head hurt worse, and there was no way in hell I was gonna try to be in the car with her for an hour. Plus I knew I’d just be in the hotel room, so no point in going. I’m 35, and that was the first time I have ever stayed alone at night. I don’t necessarily want to be around people, but I don’t like being alone either, because I’m a fraidy cat. On the rare occasion I was supposed to be alone in the past, my baby brother would stay with me. He works weekends now, though, since he’s a cop.

Y’all would’ve laughed at my paranoid self. I had the house all set up so I would hopefully hear any intruders. I put stuff at all the exterior doors that would crash over if anyone broke in, had the lights and TV on, and I stuck a door stop thingy under the bedroom door. And then it occurred to me that if I super felt like I was dying in the night and had to call 911 that they wouldn’t be able to get to me. Paranoid/anxious person problems.

No one got me. And the possible meningitis obvious was just a migraine and bug. Whoo hoo, I made it!

Hopefully with July being slower, and staying inside more because of the heat wave, we can avoid more bugs. 🤞🏻