Okay, friends - I lied.
I FULLY intended to be here and updating a day or two before Thanksgiving, but WHEN do things go exactly as planned!? I'm just glad that I was able to extend to you all a proper Thanksgiving greeting in some way or another before the holiday. Additionally, it is my hope that you all made it through the holiday unscathed and that you're all gearing up for Christmas!!
I'm here now, so that's what matters.
My Thanksgiving started off horribly. It was shortly after 12:45am on Thanksgiving morning when the internet at Casa Capulet decided to stop working. I tried everything to get it back up and running - I actually was contemplating posting a few things, but there was apparently an alternative force that was hard at work in preventing me to do so.
I begged, pleaded with my modem to cut the crap. I even tried the neighbor's dog's name to see if I could 'borrow' their WiFi. It was the middle of the night, they weren't using it, so why couldn't I? LOL. (Either they don't like their dog very much or they were smart enough to use a more randomized password, because that was also a no-go!) I reset the modem thrice; each time allowing it to be 'off' for longer periods of time in case that was the issue. It wasn't. It was too late to place a call to our cable company and demand a fix/reboot on their end, so I ended up giving up on it and going to bed around 3am. I was up again at six or seven - and the modem was still flashing like a Christmas tree. Our HOUSE phone worked, but that wasn't connecting me to the internet. It did connect us to the cable company, though, who first attempted to troubleshoot over the phone - they insisted that it was not an outage, but instead it was a need for our modem to be replaced, for it was likely broken because they were unable to get a signal. Then, they said those horrible eight words no one wants to hear:
"We're going to have to send someone out."
Now, in the past, and especially living in New York City, this meant we'd be waiting for at least a week for someone to come get us reconnected. I don't know if living in the sticks of Pennsylvania makes any difference but immediately, I began to assume the worst. I'd be waiting for a week or two, wouldn't I? I was extremely relieved to hear that I'd only have to wait until Friday (the day after Thanksgiving) and someone would be by between 9am and 9pm. This did put the kibosh on any Black Friday shopping plans but I didn't really have any other than to use a coupon or two.
Thankfully we have neighbors (across the street - with a different dog) who are kind and they allowed me to access THEIR network until the techie from the cable company was able to come over. (And their dog's name was not the password, in case you were wondering!) So, after Thanksgiving dinner at the wasband's (which went as well as it normally does - we sit around and do nothing/watch their usual chaos unfold as he barks out orders) I was able to come home and connect for a little while. The connection was slow but it still enabled me to electronically keep connected with others. So it was a decent end to a long, tiring day with minimal contact with anyone else. My J was working from 7am until 11pm - so as is, I wasn't seeing her at all.
Late Thursday night, J's two sisters dropped in (they did say there was a possibility they would) and so, Friday morning, they went out for breakfast/getting nails done while I stayed behind and waited for the cable techie to show up - in the meantime, I pulled down the attic stairs and enlisted in the help of my daughter in getting out all the Christmas decorations. Together, we got the tree up and we were decorating it when the cable techie finally arrived.
Apparently our modem was fine. It was the wires outside - they froze, and as a result, there was water in our lines. It was the first I've EVER heard of something like this happening - and during the beginning of this year (March or so) we had two extended power outages lasting 3-5 days each. Basically no power = no WiFi - so THAT's the worst-case scenario. Water in the lines, though? Never heard of such a thing.
"So, how do we prevent these wires from freezing?" I asked him, "Do you have wire sweaters, or something?"
He gave me a look, he must have thought I was trying to be funny. (Not me!) I got a 'ahem,' followed by, "sometimes, ma'am, it's what happens in extreme cold weather conditions."
I gave him a look back. "You do realize it's only November, right?"
At any rate, my wires have been replaced. I am not sure if he took extra measures to keep them from freezing, but I suppose if it were to happen again, I always have my neighbor's WiFi to fall back on until they can come fix it again.
And get this - HER wires did the same exact thing on Saturday!!!!! By now, MY WiFi was fixed, so I was able to extend to her the same courtesy. I did tell her that just for shit and giggles, she should ask for wire sweaters, too.
So, this was the drama surrounding Thanksgiving. Thankfully (not a play on words, but...) it is all over with - the turkey has been ingested, the leftovers thrown away by now, the guests have gone home, and the weekend-after Thanksgiving plans to 'Christmasize' the house have been carried out, leaving just the outside lights to be put up. (maybe later this weekend?) Now my primary focus is to just get through this ONE last holiday of 2018. I've done SOME, but not all, of my Christmas shopping by way of Black Friday/Cyber Monday sales but there is still much to be done in that respect.
I'm just not feeling it. I'm TRYING, but i'm not there, yet.
Here is where I will reluctantly admit that there's more going on in my life right now - there is more than just cable/internet problems, more than the usual holiday stress, more than the occasional tiff with the wasband about what I'm not doing correctly, more than the usual kid-related drama.
In summary, my fiancee has returned to therapy a couple months ago and is currently undergoing EMDR.
I'm unsure if I've mentioned her return to therapy previously but it was a choice she's had to make - she's had a lot of work related stressors lately, and they have brought forth some emotional changes in her. She admits to stuff coming up from 'way back,' stuff that she never truly finished dealing with or working on with her previous T. When we met, she was undergoing therapy in the state she lived in - and our relationship, although it was what we both needed in order to get ourselves in a happier, better place, did 'interrupt' the work she was doing in therapy - even more so when she moved out-of-state and had to stop going altogether.
Now, for the last ten years, we've not had to worry about things - we were both safe. She wasn't with her ex anymore, she wasn't even in the same state as him anymore. And I was no longer married to mine - not to say a lot of damage wasn't done to me either, but we had each other, our relationship was healthy and rich in communication. We carried one another through just about everything. The love is real, the support is unwavering; we have been each other's rock for the last decade. But it did neither one of us any favors that her pre-relationship treatment was interrupted and she is now in need of some maintenance.
So - it's been tough. Without getting into details, the EMDR has been intense and there has been some distance within our relationship. It's not because of a shortage of love or support, but instead a culmination of work stress, therapy stress and the emotional side effects of it all. J is the one struggling with this, firsthand, and I've had to assume the role of a secondary survivor on top of being a survivor, myself. She's throwing herself into work and in turn, I'm throwing myself into my new role as a moderator here - she does her thing, I do my thing. It's probably what we BOTH need the most right now...the time and space to sort through things on our own without the other's influence but it's resulting in feelings of disconnect that I've never experienced with her before, and I'm TRYING not to be so uneasy and unnerved by it.
It is not an easy thing for me to feel so disconnected from the one person who really and truly gets me, the one person I've COMPLETELY opened up to. She continues to remind me that I NEED to branch out more - and damnit, I've been trying! And the recent no-shows to my birthday celebration isn't helpful either, it's only shown me who I THOUGHT were reliable friends but turned out not to be.
So right now, I will continue to make it known that I am there for her when she needs or wants and at the same time, bite my tongue about what I'm feeling about it all. I've already tried to explain it but we all know that verbal discussions in the moment are not my strong point. We have made efforts to reconnect already; we have our date night 1x a week, bowling leagues 2x a week and most weekends but there is still an uncomfortable feeling of division looming. I truly feel this is expected while she's dealing with issues in therapy and it's just temporary and HOPE that's the case, but am trying not to rock the boat any further by being overly vocal about things right now.
Other than this, in the last two weeks, two mysterious bumps have appeared in the back of my head, both within inches of where my cochlear implant has been living for the last 16 years. One feels like a pimple, it's an 'external type' of bump and it's been suggested that it's an ingrown hair. I don't think that's the case, though, as I do buzz my hair every now and then but it has never been completely shaven. I've tried popping it, I've tried letting the hot water run over it, it's still not gone away. Earlier this week, I noticed a second bump, this one more 'internal' and bigger than a pimple. It is located behind my ear, where my neck meets my scalp, maybe a slight bit higher. THIS one feels like someone smacked me in the back of the head with a heavy object, it feels like a bruise, both to the touch and whenever I press on it. I do not, however, recall injuring my head at any recent time. I don't know what is going on and J's suggested that a visit to the doctor may be in order. And yes, I had to pause before typing that - because I DO know that whenever one has foreign objects implanted in their body and starts to experience discomfort, it's always been imperative to get it checked out.
But, y'all know me, I'm terrible with doctors. I'm deathly afraid of what this means - tests, tests and more tests. Blood work. CAT scans. (I cannot undergo a MRI, that'll kill me since there is a magnet implanted in my brain!) I just about lost my shit over the summer over having to have tests done at the GYN, and my mammogram test (and re-test) and this is probably mild in comparison. But it's just not something I want to do, right now. J herself has a follow-up scan scheduled for later this week to check on whether the radiation treatment she had in June was 100% effective. So we really don't NEED any other possible medical emergencies, not right now. And if I can wait things out for a few weeks, that's what I'm likely to do. Especially since we have a vacation planned (our 10-year anniversary) for the beginning of January.
I want to reach for my swatter, and thwack all that is unnecessary into that state of oblivion - at least until much, MUCH later.
But now???? Right now??? It's CHRISTMAS time, I cannot fall apart right now, especially having to be the glue...
But that's a summation of why I'm Scrooge-ish right now, why I put together the Holiday Buddies thingy (have you signed up!???), why I'm such a constant presence here - it is because offline, I've nowhere else to go for support other than to a place that may not be entirely accessible to me right now. Next week, I have a visit from my mother to look forward to - Wednesday, she will arrive and she will depart early Friday morning - in the meantime, we've plans to bake five types of Christmas cookies (which I will gladly share by way of photo status updates!) and hopefully that'll help somewhat ease into the spirit of the season.
Anyway - posting this now - again, my apologies for being somewhat absent. I am trying to be better with this - perhaps it's a good thing that I have an appointment on Friday morning with the group leader/social worker.
I'll be back, soon.
Sending you all love.