Sing, Sing A Song

My injury that resulted in the c5-c7 disk removal / spinal fusion over a decade ago… it stole so much from my life. 😞 Not the surgery itself so much, but the resulting nerve damage that made my left arm rather useless. There are still days when I’m surprised by the discovery of something else “new” that I’m no longer able to do.Β πŸ™ I should have kept a running list… but boy would that have been depressing to have everything I’ve lost, all in one handy notebook.

Well, my most recent neck “thing” seems determined to steal something from me as well. I’m still in the middle of the whole “cancer treatment” thing, with the first step having been the removal of the thyroid… and now while I’m waiting for the radioactive iodine treatment in a couple of weeks, in the mean time I can’t help but be a little bitter about a particular side effect of this surgery. 😠

I dunno… for all I know, this might not be something permanent – but considering that I’m about a month and a half out from the surgery, it’s probably gonna stick. You may or may not know, but music is everythingΒ to me. 🀨 Whether listening to it, playing it on a keyboard, crafting it via Amiga / PC tracker programs, or just singing in the car or even at karaoke back in the day. Well I’ve lost a big chunk of that passion, because I can no longer sing. 😟 At least in no way that I used to.

At first I just couldn’t hit the notes at all. Songs that I’ve sung out loud or in my head a thousand times… I now sound like any other shlub that might try to sing it at karaoke somewhere, to the cringes of the peanut gallery.Β πŸ˜’ With a conscious effort, thankfully I’ve been able to get someΒ of my “pitch” ability back – but I’ve lost a huge amount of my higher range. 😒 I’m not sure if it’s because things got tightened up inside my neck, the same way the skin has on the outside (due to the new incision and stitches), but during those moments when I’m not hitting the higher notes – I can actually feel it pulling. 😣 It’s a difficult sensation to describe without the listener having experienced it themselves.

And yeah, I know… considering that I lost some of my range as a side effect of trying to free my body of cancer… I know that it probably sounds silly or greedy for me to be complaining about something that many people would see as frivolous, given the situation.Β πŸ™„ But seriously, when so much has already been taken from me, and singing was one of the few things that I just endlessly enjoyed, whether by myself or in front of people… it’s just another kick in the nuts that life has decided to send my way. 😑 “So… that one thing you’ve always loved doing? Yeah, well that’s about enough of all that.”Β Fucking awesome.

Meh… it’s not gonna stop me from singing, at least not when I’m by myself, so maybe, hopefully, things may continue healing in a way where I can get a little more of my voice back. If I would have known this was coming my way, I definitely would have recorded as many songs as I could before going under the knife. Years ago I recorded enough songs to fill 3 CDs, which I then shared with Mom and Dad and a few other people… but I never thought those would be all that I’d ever do, at least not until now.Β πŸ™

I’ve never claimed to be a great singer. I’ve never even really claimed to be a good singer. It was more that I was good enough, and I recorded the songs that I did because I just love singing, and trying to sound like I love singing. 😏 I wanted people to be able to hear me doing something I loved, because of how it made me feel. Meh… it sounds dumb when I try to put my thoughts about it to words.Β πŸ˜• Oh, and I don’t care if anyone thinks that this is all self-pity… because it is, and I think I’ve earned it.

Advertisements

Pass The Baton / Kick The Can

I didn’t do my bills last night, but I’m doing them now. πŸ˜’ They’re enough of a pain in the ass that I think I deserve an intermission, so I figured I’d jump over here and drop a few paragraphs. I knocked out the easy ones… gas, electric, internet, etc… but all of the fun medical related ones are starting to come in, and I want to pay closer attention as they nickel and dime me. 🀨 Mostly just to make sure that they don’t nickel and dime me over the same test, scan, procedure, or person twice.

My appointment today? Well, I guess it was okay. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ He said that the pathology reports on the tissue removed during my surgery was exactly what the pre-surgery biopsy had suggested, and that it’s the most common and most treatable type of thyroid cancer. 😐 Bleh… I don’t like using that word, so don’t expect to see it get used much here. 😷 So, it was a good follow-up, with the labs at least not coming back with something scarier than already thought. And I really pushed him for his true opinion. I told him not to bullshit me, and asked him if he had any “gasp” moments during the surgery.

Like I told him, before I was able to get workers comp to pay for my C5-C7 fusion surgery, I had to get an MRI done – with several doctors and medical assistant folks looking at the results, which showed some pretty severe damage. 🧐 And each one that didΒ look at it… it gave them a “gasp” moment. 😧

Where even a trained medical professional was like Wow. 😳 or Damn. 😯 or Holy shit. 😱

I explained how that helped me in thatΒ previousΒ situation, as it got everything approved and moving much more quickly… but that a “gasp” moment now isn’t something that I was hoping for, but that I still wanted him to tell me if it happened to him while he was digging around inside my neck. 😐 His reply seemed genuine (as usual) when he said that nothing was any more concerning to him once he was in there than when he was anticipating how it would look and how it would go. πŸ‘πŸ»

He explained that there was inflammation, but no more than he was expecting. He said that nothing gave him any kind of pause, that the surgery went as well as he could have hoped for, and that I don’t need to worry so much at this point. (Easier said than done, pal… 😏) I’m getting more blood drawn tomorrow, and he’s referring me to an endocrinologist in the same building that will hopefully help get my screwed up levels straightened out, as well as likely doing (or scheduling) this marker/radiation pill dealΒ  – which will hopefully be a one time thing followed by close monitoring. 🀞🏻

I figure I’ll save the questions about if/when I’ll have to see an oncologist, although I’m guessingΒ that’sΒ gonna be the doctor that would be doing the marker/radiation pill deal that I just mentioned, now that I think about it. πŸ€” It’s a little frustrating to be handed off from specialist to specialist, but better to have a whole bunch of different eyes on the situation than just one d00d who might not know what he’s doing, right?

So today’s follow-up… I’ll take it as a positive outcome. πŸ™‚ Didn’t really learn anything new, but learning that the labs confirmed what the initial tests suggested, and nothing worse… that’s sure better than the alternative. Also, having the whole “Don’t BS me, doc.” conversation, with the way he replied… it did actually make me feel a little more comfortable with the whole thing in my head. And so it goes…

Working The Kinks Out

It seems that, for a change, I did exactly what I needed to do to get myself feeling better from yesterday. 😳 Before I even started The Walking Dead last night I raised shields, cut off communications, and let things remain that way until half way through the day today. I only slept about 6 hours, but walking up to the sun rising, as well as to a phone that I had no intention of checking… it’s like the minimal stress of wondering what my phone will want from me is sometimes enough to tip me to the bad side, where whatever I’m trying to shake will remain. 😐 More of my weirdness, I suppose.

And it’s not like I’m in high demand or something… but it just helped everything about how I was feeling yesterday, to not be beholden to my phone or anyone wanting me for anything through it. (Make sentences bad, structure coming good tonight is not. πŸ˜…) And as they day progressed, even though I used the laptop to dick around on Twitter, I started feeling better. πŸ™‚ As I was watching Justice League I started straightening the living room. As I watched some news I went ahead and ran the vacuum. And then before I started some YouTube videos about scanner/radio frequencies, πŸ€“ I took all the baskets of dirty clothes down to the basement and started a couple loads. All of that before I even thought about looking at my phone. πŸ˜€

When I did, I was relieved to see that I only had a couple messages waiting for me, and nothing on my social media of any importance. The world went on just fine without me. SHIT. I do think I remember seeing a call notice though.

I guess I better check that now… πŸ˜…Β  Β ** pause while listening to voice mail **

Well I have absolutely no idea what the hell that was all about. Some fella left a message, and he knew my first name, saying that he was from Lowe’s installation and that he was calling about my “overnight cooktop” (I think) and wanted me to give him a call back to let him know if I’d be home. Heh… no idea. I guess I’ll find out tomorrow, but I can tell you right now the last thing I’m interested in is an overnight cooktop.

But anyway… all that’s left for me to do today is get these shirts onto hangers and up in the closet, and the towels onto the shelf into the bathroom and I’m golden. 😎 Just gonna take that for what it’s worth, and I’ll worry about tomorrow when tomorrow gets here. I’m just happy that I figured out what it took to get me through this day.

Hmm, This Is New

I’ve been cautiously creeping through the past couple of days, making sure that I didn’t do anything that could possibly tweak my neck (since it’s been acting up again) but the past 12 hours have been awful anyway. πŸ˜‘ Sleeping for an hour here and there, and then when I finally woke up and stayed up for good this morning at 6am – I had some serious chest pains going on. 😳

My breathing was fine, I wasn’t lightheaded, and I didn’t feel any tingling in my arms, legs, or face – so even though it caused me concern I decided to not go to the ER. πŸ€·πŸ»β€β™‚οΈ I actually went in town to get some aspirin though… a couple to chew right away, and the rest to add to my normal daily pills. Just in case. (I even sat in the parking lot at the hospital for a bit. Also just in case.) But the idea of heart troubles or a heart attack… my brain goes “You’re fine, that only happens to old people.” while forgetting that I amΒ close to being “old people” if not there already.

I caught a nap after coming back home, hoping that if I got a little more sleep that it might make me feel better, but that’s not been the result so far. 😟 I swear, it’s like I slept on my front, and someone snuck a baseball-sized rock in between the mattress and my sternum. 😣 I’m not dead so far though… heh… so I’m gonna give it one more day and if it isn’t noticeably better then I guess I’ll almost have to go to the ER.

Do the majority of folks my age (and older) always feel like they’re falling apart? 😒 I’m obviously really hoping that this is just nothing… so I’d definitely appreciate any “thoughts and prayers” that anyone may care to throw at me until it passes. β€πŸ™πŸ» Looks like I’ll be remaining in neutral for a while longer.

At Ease

I’m doing my best to make the remainder of my evening peaceful. ☺ I’ve straightened up the living room a bit, I’ve got my new spiral bound journal/notepads and extra-fine tipped Pilot Precise V5 rolling ball pens sitting nearby (Mmm… office supplies… 🀀) just in case I feel like writing, and I just ordered the latest Pirates of The Caribbean movie on PPV so I have something to distract me from the “real” and transport me somewhere else.

See, when all I have to worry about is myself, I’m quite capable of not being a mess. 😏 But things like earlier today, where I was simply asked to a family gathering… something that I do appreciate still even being invited to… that messed me up for the better part of the day, feeling bad because I couldn’t make myself go – and knowing that I was letting people down again.

That’s definitely the “mom” in me – how it really does a number on me when something (even unintentionally) makes me feel like a disappointment. 😞 I just gotta remind myself, especially when I’m already struggling, that I can’t live my life to please others – and as long as it isn’t being done maliciously, there’s nothing wrong with that.

So once again I’ll finish this evening by hoping that the feeling continues into the next day, and that maybe my Sunday will truly feel like a day off – where nobody is counting on me for anything, so I can start the day with a clean slate when it comes to what I want to accomplish, if anything. I just really wanna start turning things around, and it doesn’t even matter where it starts. πŸ™‡β€β™‚οΈ I’m not giving up just yet.

Little Things Mean A Lot

It’s a handy thing to remember that when I talk about negative things or depression or whatever, it’s quite likely that what I’m feeling is actually considerably stronger than what I’m putting out for public consumption. However, the same can be said for the positive things. Even though most of the time I’d compare waking up, existing for the day, and then falling asleep to slogging through an endless waist-high bog of mud right now – I absolutely have good moments, and sometimes they’re actually really good moments. They’re just so hard to hang on to anymore.

I’m knocking out several blog entries today, after a week of relative silence, because I’m having one of those good moments. For the reasons that I’ve mentioned in the other posts below, but also because Cassi stayed last night, is probably gonna come back after her errands of the day to stay again, and even though we’ve “been there, done that” with our phase as a couple – we’re still managing to stay close, and we’re still quite important to each other. And I know, people could go down a list of oil/water things about us, but it doesn’t matter… sometimes time spent with each other, even if it’s just silently in the same room, watching the same shows on Netflix that we’ve already watched together multiple times, sometimes that time is more important than someone would ever think.

Even though being alone in my bubble is nice when I’m experiencing a span of less-than-great, sometimes letting one significant other person into the bubble as well can be a good thing. Because what often starts off as a “misery loves company” thing, almost always ends up turning away from the negative and letting us find some happy… at least for the time we’re together.

And it’s so difficult, even for myself, to understand how despite being able to spend a couple days with her around me nearly 24/7, it would be almost impossible for me to go in town and have even a short visit with nearly anyone else that I know, even if inside I really wanted to. I wish I could understand it, because I’d give anything to be able to explain it to the people that I care about, so that they could understand that even though my absence probably (understandably) feels personal – it’s not meant that way at all. It’s just one of the ways I’m damaged. 😞 Meh… I need to stop sweating this, and just accept that it’s an unfortunate situation that is unable to be changed so I need to quit mentally pushing against that wall.

Believe it or not, that’s something that Christina was trying to help me better understand the other day. She had made a post on FB about going through shit, getting back up, dusting yourself off, and continuing on while giving no shits about whatever the initial problem was. And for her to be able to be filled with that type of optimism was inspiring to me, because she just went through her first round of chemotherapy just a couple days ago. 😟 Yet here she was, saying “shit happens” and somehow being able to shake it off enough to continue on with whatever’s next, without letting it weigh her down. And she’s not really a gushy, inspirational-quote-spewing type of person… which made the little exchange even more meaningful to me. And she probably doesn’t even know it.

Against The Wind

I usually have a pretty good game face. 🀡🏻 I mean, here in the blog, yeah… I tend to open up a little more, because at least until I have a single post or photo unexpectedly go viral for some reason that I’m totally not prepared for – this site has very limited readership, but it’s still nice to be able to “let shit out” now and then. πŸƒπŸ»πŸ’¨πŸ’©

Most of the time no matter what amount of physical pain that I may be experiencing, or how much emotional shit that might be dragging me down, I’m gonna do my best to make sure that the average shmo isn’t aware of it. 😐 This is something that Mom and I used to discuss a lot… whether, in the long run, it is better to hide the “bad” in order to appear strong, or if it makes more sense to let people know how you are feeling so that they’ll understand if it starts making you act in a way that seems weird to them.

Well yeah, I’m pretty close to losing that “game face” ability right now. πŸ˜– I’m not gonna bother going through all of the stuff that’s swirling around in my brain 24/7 these days, but let’s just say that I feel something coming again. 😟 And it wasn’t good, the last time this happened. And I know that saying things like this “out loud” in the blog is something that will trigger concern in the people that care about me, but just know that I’ve got a couple friends that I talk to about this stuff, so it’s not like I’m completely isolated. πŸ˜’πŸš‘ But hell, complete isolation sounds like a pretty enticing alternative to the current reality.

Talking about it helps me to fight against it, in case you wondered why I’m willing to spew such personal information and feeling here. And I do still need to fight it. I’m using today as a heavy reset, a hard break to separate the past couple of weeks from the days that are coming… because I’m going into offensive mode tomorrow, rather than waiting for the next thing to come. I’m going to get this fucking estate shit settled. It’s ridiculous that the tiniest things have held this all up for months longer than it really should have lasted.

The whole reason I’ve been as meticulous as possible in the way I’ve handled it is because I wanted to do everything that I could to ensure that the estate ended up with the absolute most amount of money as possible. And that’s not only with my own wants or needs in mind, but more because with Mom and Dad being in retirement age – they are going to want and need as much money as possible as well, to hopefully keep their worries about their financial situation as far from their thoughts as possible.

I feel like the bird that pecks away at the mountain made of diamond, but now that I’m fighting my own court battle and trying to negotiate a settlement regarding my workers comp case, having the estate stuff buzzing around like a mosquito inside of my ear canal… I just need to get it wrapped up so I can divvy up the remains and get it fucking sorted and over with.

There’s no way to get friends and family to truly understand that it’s not personal when I essentially disappear or have to passively ignore them, when I just don’t have it in me to open my FB Messenger or look at my snaps. But that’s where I’ve been for days now, as the messages start building up behind digital doors that get harder and harder for me to open.

I dunno… wish me luck for tomorrow, I guess. 😞 Nothing is gonna magically get better, nothing is gonna suddenly just start sucking less, and the mood or phase that I’m entering… it’s not gonna be easy on me or the people that care about me. So wish me luck for tomorrow. One day. Because that’s how I have to approach things now… a single day at a time, sometimes single hours at a time… I’m not giving in quite yet.