Going to the chapel and I’m…

Gonna get married!

I’ve been really, really, really remiss in blogging this past year. Life got in the way, and priorities shifted.

Honestly, blogging still is a great catharsis for me, but I get lazy. I used to blog on nights I wasn’t out with my man, but then we moved in together…and, well, love!

Anyhow, last Christmas, we decided we’d move in together when my lease was up in May. Telling my roommates went better than I expected (I don’t think they were all that surprised). I was sad to leave them, but it was fun to start looking at places and such. I learned a lot about apartments in the area. Eventually, we found a lovely townhouse that we ended up renting from foreign service peeps (they’re in Russia). It’s beautiful, has a lovely patio, and our neighbors are great! (Which we learned more than ever this weekend when they helped us dig out of our house…)

Moving in together was more seamless than I thought it’d be, too. May itself was a bit rough. We had a lot more “deep” conversations, or our version of arguing, as we figured out how we each communicate and our preferences. That all settled down pretty quickly, though. I started getting super suspicious and curious about whether he’d propose…but it didn’t happen. My best friend got engaged, and we went to 3 weddings last fall… and then, November 7th, he proposed :), the last weekend before wedding #4 of the season. I said yes! And now we’re wedding planning, and our wedding will be in November of 2016.

I was mostly surprised when he proposed. I definitely had considered if he’d do it over that weekend since we were traveling with friends, and it seemed to be the last good chance before the holidays. That said, a lot of things had thrown me off, and I didn’t want to get my hopes up. I definitely hadn’t figured out how he’d do it – he made me a lovely book, and there really aren’t words for how special it is. I cried, the ring is beautiful, and our friends joined us after the proposal for a day of fun. The only downer is my best friends got terrible news that weekend about their mom/MIL, and that sucked.

Also, FYI – weddings are expensive as fuck and people get crazy and opinionated about some weird-ass shit. Plus, there are WAY too many neat places in the world to pick just one for a honeymoon…

Train wreck, continued…

Last week was constant travel and stress for work, and this weekend just continued my emotional mess. I wallowed WAY more than I ever do, and spent hours watching Suits and feeling the sads. I did some things, including pumpkin picking, and there were bursts of fun, but Saturday night I should’ve done something and instead I wallowed. Normally, I force myself to socialize in those moments to get me out of the funk, but I didn’t have the emotional energy for it. It was one of those nights where I could’ve used company, but didn’t want to actively do anything, only everyone I know that could’ve included me in plans was doing something. Anyhow, at my book club Sunday I realized I should’ve gone to their event because they’re chill enough. The boyfriend helped, though, because he was willing to talk through some of our issues more.

This week has been marginally better so far. Work is still insanely stressful, but at least I’m busy. I’ve actively been refraining from getting more involved, even though there are some great opportunities being presented. I’m too busy to give my time away any more, which is a blessing and a curse. The sex I’ve had with the dude has been fantabulous, which always helps. My body remembers the deliciousness and just wants more… My family stuff is worse than ever, but I cycle through wallowing.

I’ve decided I do need to set up something with a therapist. I’m rapidly approaching a point where I feel overwhelmed and the desire to wallow and be sad is more present than I’ve had it be in over a decade. I’m not OK with that. I want to go back to enjoying the world around me more and thinking the best of people and situations. I’m not sure how to do that, though, with this debilitating loss. It’s made me rethink relationships with some people and impacts how I see everything. Now for the dude to help me figure out my insurance and where to go…

And, on the positive of all positives, I have a week long beach vacation starting Saturday. Clearly, I need this vacation more than ever.

Too Soon

My dad went on a date tonight. My mom died 6 weeks ago. Isn’t that all there is to say?

On the one hand, he doesn’t have many friends, and making friends in the middle america states is difficult. Spending day in and out alone, thinking of a future alone, minus occasional interactions with my sibling and I, well, I get being lonely. He’s a dude, he could even be horny. I understand that he may want companionship and feel lost in his grief.

That said, joining an online dating site and making a date just 6 weeks after your wife of almost 33 years passed? Going on the date 2 days after what would’ve been your 33rd anniversary? WTF?

And of course, he’s told no one, just me. I want to encourage him to be happy, and I do want him to find happiness with someone else…but I can’t comprehend it yet. I thought I had a year or so.

Thing is, I still reach for the phone to call my mom, I still think of telling her things. I’m constantly shocked when I remember she’s gone. I can’t even understand the world without her yet. I’m still trying to understand a world with my dad without my mom, to imagine more weekends and situations where we’ll be together and she won’t be there. So…it’s a bit difficult for me to believe my dad can not only comprehend it, but can let someone else in so quickly.

I’m trying to remember the ways in which my dad demonstrated his love for my mom and showed his grief. I believe he desperately loved my mom and was truly heartbroken when she passed. This may just be his way of coping because he doesn’t know what else to do. But really, it’s hard, because I need to adjust to him alone before adjusting to him with someone new. But, it’s his life, not mine, and we’re all grownups, and my needs don’t necessarily come before his, not anymore. :(.

On the plus side and not too soon side, dude and I are madly in love and it’s fabulous (and celebrating 7 months!), and I’ve lost 15 lbs and 14 inches. So, *woot* on those notes.

Bereft

Warning: Long ass post, very personal and irrelevant to other people. Disregard if you don’t want a healthy dose of negativity.

I’m going to preface the ranty/bitchy/sad part of this post with a few things.

First, I know my parents love me. I know they are proud of me. I know they talk me up and brag to their friends and our other family about me. I know they care that I succeed. I know they respect me. I know my sister loves me, is proud of me, and respects me as well. Second, I know they are all doing their best in very, very difficult situations. Third, I acknowledge that compared to many, my situation is not that bad. I am not ungrateful for the many blessings I’ve had in my life. There are people that struggle far worse than I do, than I have, and I’m lucky for any help I get in this world, and I got more than nothing.

That said… My parents respect me and are proud of me, but I don’t think they realize how much effort goes into who I am. They have not ever understood that I’m not naturally exuberant and carefree, that good grades aren’t simple, that work isn’t easy. My hard work tends to go unnoticed. They notice the results, but the effort that goes into achieving those results seems to be unacknowledged. In the past year or so, I’ve tried to communicate that a bit better, but it still tends to go unnoticed.

My whole life, I have strived to be better. Not to be perfect, but to succeed as much as possible. At first, it was because that was what was expected. Then, as time went on, it was because I wanted some form of attention and praise from my parents (and if not them, then authority figures that could substitute for them). No matter what I did, it never really seemed to be enough. I did, at some point, start doing things for me…but that feeling never really went away.

I think part of the disconnect stems from my sister’s more emotional nature. I’m very logical, and I tend to be closed off emotionally unless prompted. My parents don’t prompt me, so they don’t see the feelings behind the actions frequently. My sister has never been afraid to scream, yell, argue, cry, etc. I never do those things with them. At an early age, my sister was in therapy and hospitals, all encouraging family communication; as a result, my parents communicated regularly with the help of therapists with my sister, but they never communicated with me like that. I don’t know that they realize how much it feels like they emotionally understand and support her, and not me. My dad used to be there for me far more frequently growing up, but as an introverted man, communication was never his strongest suit.

Throughout the most recent bout of struggling my family has gone through, I’ve tried to keep a logical mind. I have been legitimately, truly concerned for my sister’s welfare. There were times I questioned her ability to make it through another week. I am happy my parents are there for her, and have stood by her through these tough times. It’s been very difficult being far away throughout it all. As much as I try, I can’t stop feeling like my parents care more about her than me, though. It is irrational. I know they love me. It just seems like every conversation, every caring thought, focuses on her  and her issues. She needs their support…but I do too. I need their love, and to hear them care about me too. In my family,  negative things are communicated readily and easily, but positive ones rarely are. Complaints and worry get more volume than love and praise.

This weekend, it all went to shit, at least on my end. I have no idea whether or not my parents realize this, though I do believe on some level they do. I got a present in the mail (a new outfit) that I’m reasonably positive is an indicator of their combined guilt. My dad talking to me separately about things also indicated they knew I would be upset.

For months, my sister has been going on about my parents buying her a house. She has been persistent beyond rational thought. At her most unstable moments, she has still been diligent that my parents were buying her a house. She was doing drugs and causing scenes at her apartment, not caring about the consequences. She invited my parents to multiple showings. When she got evicted, she was happy about it. Throughout all of this, my parents have been insistent that they weren’t going to buy her a house, no way, no how. A couple of weeks later…and they’re buying her a $25K trailer. Logically, I do understand. With her prior evictions, bad credit, medical history, and other issues, it would be nearly impossible to find a place willing to rent to her. The stress of her living situation has made her mental situation worse. She’ll still have to pay for lot fees and utilities, so it isn’t entirely free.

At the end of the day, though, my parents are essentially giving her $25,000 towards a home. They’re paying her car bills and phone bills, giving her money regularly for gas, and taking her out to eat with them.

Last year, when I graduated, it wasn’t even a week when my father was pressuring me to get a loan to take over my car payments. It wasn’t a month later when I took over my phone bills and car insurance. Grad school was entirely on my dime. My father pays for nothing right now in my life. I pay all of it. In fact, the one thing I do with him is give him my money for my phone, since it’s less expensive on a family plan, and despite my paying my bills on time and using less than my share of the data, he still wanted me off the plan. Last year, when I needed rent money since my first paycheck wasn’t coming for a week after the due date (as in, I’d pay it back in a week), he said he couldn’t help me at all.

My sister has been getting rent money for years. She’s been having her car and phone bills subsidized for years. In fact, this was her fourth car they’ve assisted her with, after car accidents and poor maintenance killed the other three.

Again, I’m grateful, because my parents helped me through college. They  helped me as a child. They give me presents at holidays and when I’m with them, they pay for most things. That said, it still stings and hurts and stirs all sorts of rage for the inequity of this situation. I am close to $80K in debt from grad school, and I’ll be paying off those loans for the next 10-25 years. I will not own a house or even a shitty condo until I get married or after that 10-25 years, because I can’t save up the $25-50K necessary for a down payment. I throw away money in rent month after month, unable to get ahead at all because I’m so busy keeping afloat. $25K would make a world of difference in my life.

I don’t ask for help, and when I do, it’s turned down. I struggle and work my ass off, and I do everything right. Meanwhile, nothing. My sister does drugs and gets arrested and evicted and she gets a huge financial subsidy. I know she needs it more than me, arguably, but at the same time, she doesn’t seem to acknowledge and fully appreciate how good she has it.

If that isn’t enough, when she was arrested and subsequently committed, someone stole her laptop from her car (why was it in her car?). So my dad is getting a new computer for his birthday, and of course his top of the line electronics go to her. I’ve paid for every laptop I’ve owned myself, after hard work in retail for over a year and then via loans. My sister has gotten more than 3 laptops from my father and one of my old ones, all for free. It’s just that one more thing.

It’s driving me crazy. On top of it, conversations focus all around her and how awesome things are with this house payment thing and her getting medicaid. Yes, the medicaid is a blessing, but my mom saying it’s the best thing she’s heard in weeks kills me, when I called her because I had good news of my own. It’s like there’s not enough attention and support to go around, and because I seem to do ok without it, I don’t get it. When I’ve tried to communicate this in the past, I get yelled at or nothing happens, so I’ve given up. My closest to communicating was telling my mom to not talk about my sister to me anymore. I can’t hear about it. I want to know if she’s close to death (aka something extreme happens), but that’s it.

I want to be a good daughter and sister. I do. I realize that I should be happy my parents are helping her, I should acknowledge that it’s difficult and this is the only thing they see as possible to do. I know they don’t have unlimited funds and that they’re likely stretching thin with helping her. I want my sister to be well, to be happy, and to feel empowered to improve her life and find happiness. I want my parents to have an easier burden and be happy.

Despite all that, I can’t seem to shake my anger, envy, and sadness about it all. I feel neglected and unfairly treated…and I hate myself a bit for feeling like that, too. I want to be happy, too, and I’d love to have my family behind me, supporting me and showing me equal love and affection. Money isn’t everything, though this post likely seems like that. I just wish they’d acknowledge me sometimes too, or understand how hard it is to “do everything right,” and how support from them really would make all the difference. I wish they’d realize just how inequitable it all seems sometimes. I know they love me, but with all this going on, it feels like they understand, care about, and generally love her more. Irrational as that is, that’s how I feel.

I’ve been so stretched for time, I haven’t blogged in a month. I haven’t kept up with my positivity journal, or processed anything, and it stresses me out even further. It’s not a great place to be in, mentally.

Things have been crazy. I was out of town for a week on vacation. I’ve been home for 18 days, and I only spent 3 of those nights at home/by myself. Seriously. Between different groups of friends and a new dating prospect, there has been NO TIME. Two of those nights I was home were spent building furniture. I’ve wracked up about $2500 in debt this month alone from furniture-purchasing.

To add to my general state of stress, I’m going to the frontlines again for work for two weeks, leaving this weekend. Preparing mentally, packing, and getting things prepped at work hasn’t been easy.

If that wasn’t enough, I had to move rooms before leaving, which meant painting one room, repainting another, and a variety of random home improvement things. I’m still bummed because I didn’t have a chance to go through my stuff as I moved it (I wanted to purge unused things), but at least it’s moved and it looks good.

Further, my sister has been hospitalized 4 separate times within the last month (mental hospitalization). She’s been brought by cops each time. Two times, drugs stronger than weed have been involved. She’s officially bipolar manic depressive with psychotic episodes, and she doesn’t take her meds. She was evicted, and her fiance is apparently on the edge of breaking up with her. My mom is about to lose her shit because of all the stress. It sucks. The phone calls bringing up my past and spewing emotions and insanity whilst threatening visits aren’t helping either.

I have so much to process and think about, especially to try to recount positive memories as of late. There have been some. Unfortunately, I think I’ve been a panic-ridden mess lately to most people in my life. I’ve been running around like a chicken with its head cut off. My to-do lists seem never-ending, and I just haven’t had the time I need to decompress.

I’ve been sort of seeing someone; it’s casual, but we’ve gone out 7 times. I have fun when we’re together, despite the fact that there are tiny things that don’t appeal to me. I’ve been more attracted to others, and it’d be great if he were a more decisive, gentlemanly type…but he treats me well and is open-minded. He’s much less experienced than anyone I’ve ever been with, and more religious. I do like him. I feel like crap though because the last three times we’ve hung out, we haven’t gone very far sexually. (There have definitely been times when we were there, though, so it seems extra weird to have done things and then not do them.)  Tonight, I couldn’t relax. I couldn’t let go enough to enjoy myself. I’m so stressed, I couldn’t process. He seemed really ok with it, listened, cuddled for a hot minute, and talked as if he’d still be in touch/interested in hanging out/understood…but I feel bad. I feel like a tease. I don’t want him to lose interest because of it, but I don’t want to do things I’m not in the mood for either. Then, of course, as he was leaving I was able to relax a bit more and sort of get into it…but then it’s too late.

In times like this, I need a man who will pin me down, look in my eyes, and command me to focus on the moment and him. Then, he can slowly kiss and caress me and I’ll get into it and relax and we can all be good. He can use pain to draw me to the moment if I start to drift away mentally. This is where kink helps me relax into things. I’m so out of control right now that I’m worrying about everything. We’re making out, and I’m still thinking – about what may happen, how he’s doing, if my roommate will hear, etc. He takes the initiative to get pinchey/bitey, which is awesome, but I need someone to assert and take control of the situation in a way that leaves me no choice, otherwise I still worry and feel like I should be controlling things. Feeling like I should be in control when I’m so incapable of being so at this moment makes me worry and not relax. Ugh. How do I explain that? Do I? I guess I should, should we see each other again, that way he can try to do it…he’s been open to trying things before. But then, part of me just wishes I could find the right Dominant man who would just *be* that way.

Life.

Well, after a few more days of decline, my sister is in the hospital. I got off work and read her fiance’s post about how much he misses and loves her forever, and I thought she was gone. It was a horrifying moment. It’s still frightening, because neither her fiance nor my parents have any idea what is going on. Unless she releases information, they can’t say anything to anyone…so we’re all in the dark, hoping and praying that everything is ok.

This is the first hospitalization due to mental reasons of a family member since I was in middle school. There have been many hospitalizations, crises, and other incidences, but not of this nature. It’s really difficult. I wish I could do something further to support my family.

In other news, the uber-promotion is officially gone, at least for the time being. I was right in that the major boss lady didn’t know it had even been offered before it was taken away by her deputy. I  may still be able to get a pay raise, but I haven’t negotiated my contract yet. On the plus side, I get to work on a high-profile, interesting job with a very competent manager, and I will likely have the opportunity to further prove my worth towards managing my own job next time around.

On a totally different note, our roommate search continues. We got stood up by a potential roommate tonight, but have a few interviews/showings set up for this weekend. I hope we can work it out soon – I don’t like uncertainty.

I also attended a class on M/s relationships last night that I’m processing. I’m sure I’ll write more on that later. The most notable takeaway in the meantime was that Masters take responsibility, and slaves surrender. A slave can surrender without being submissive in nature.

Random things – really enjoying Phillip Phillip’s “The World From the Side of the Moon” album and Avicci’s Rapture. I’m rereading Robin Brande’s books after having read a great book titled “Replay.” “Lean In” by Sheryl Sandburg is next on the list (I need all the encouragement to lean in and be empowered that I can get).

Difficult Moments

It’s been a rough few days.

A friend at work joined fetlife, making me relatively paranoid. Of course, that meant scrubbing my profile/photos/fetishes just a tad…I’m not into anything too extreme, but I also didn’t want to chance any probing questions.

Work is difficult…there have been leadership changes, my pseudo-promotion thing has been taken away, and now I’m tasked with a new project. The new project is interesting and should be fun, but I still have to multi-task on my old project. This would be less of a big deal if my old teammate did work, or if I could expose his lack of doing work…instead I’m literally just going to be doing two jobs, and I doubt anyone will even realize it. We’ll see how this goes. On the plus side, the new teammate is an alum of my grad program and is highly competent, so that should be good.

My trip to NYC was canceled, but it was nice being in town. I was able to clean and get some errands done, finally. I ended up with some fun in-town experiences too, so that made up for it a bit.

The real kicker was a phone call with a family member. Essentially, I’m really worried and afraid for this person, and I’m helpless to do anything. I want to show support, but I also don’t want anything terrible to happen. I have witnessed manic episodes in a different family member that’s bipolar, but never one that resulted in hospitalization. (Those happened when I was too little.) I’ve never seen or heard anything quite like this, and it really freaked me out. It was made worse when past traumas, my job, and other factors were brought into things…things I don’t want to talk about that have never been said out loud, basically.

I’m a bit paranoid that this person reads this blog, even though I don’t know how they would. The link is available through my fetlife profile, but only for friends-only (and not at all anymore). My erotic story profile links here too. That said, I don’t think my kink presence is known…still, I’m paranoid. The beauty of this blog has been the anonymous way to express myself. It’s getting to the point where too many people have talked about it with me, inhibiting my writing, or too many people may stumble into it. I’m not sure what that will mean for my writing.

Again, weird and rough couple of days.