Tearing my Hair ("Weasels Rip my Flesh")
Friday, September 8, 2006, 6:02 PM
I am out on my constitutional, finally, walking in the neighborhood. I was supposed to walk with Scott, but that fell through. He got laid off yesterday and has a lot to do, dump stuff to prepare as well as employment issues.
He got bad news and I got bad news. I've already told my bad news to some of my family and friends. The house failed the appraisal, though I haven't heard enough to know exactly why. Bruce is busy with Golden Harvest Festival (I wish, in a way, I could still be involved in that!), so he doesn't have time to tell me what he learned and discuss the ramifications. Scott's bad news is that he got laid off from the temporary job he got when he got laid off his real job.
It's a warm sunny day and it's the first time I've been outside. I used to live outside whenever I could and it's sad to be inside.
I'm sad period. Very sad, depressed, maybe. I feel bad for myself, bad for Erin, bad for Keith, bad for Bruce, bad about the whole thing. I feel guilty, but I don't seem to be able to change who I am. I feel like it's my fault and that I'm a bad person. And, it is my fault, in some respects. I'm sure I could have done a better job care taking the house.
Then again, the house was half Bruce's and he could have helped too. He had money to travel a lot, seemed like a lot, and could have contributed to the upkeep of the house which he was supposed to half own and be getting half the profits if there are any.
Maybe we should have taken the $60,000 that Mike and Mike offered for house as is.
I have a lot of reasons or excuses. Rationalizations, perhaps, though they do have some truth in them:
• I've been very poor since Bruce left me, always under the federal poverty level with the exception of two years near the end of my stay at MOST where I crept just slightly above it. Barely, still pretty poor.
• I was almost always working extra hours at MOST and one to three additional jobs, even four sometimes, teaching courses, working at beaver Lake part time etc. I was always busy.
• I was sick. There was a period of time when my fibromyalgia was extremely bad and it was hard for me to do much of anything and before that, I had a really bad spell of asthma.
• I have ADHD and have serious problems concentrating and following through and it is not "my fault" in the sense that I didn't choose to have that condition, it's biological.
• I have and have had for a long time severe insomnia that seriously compromises my energy levels, moods and motivation. I'm always tired. It's not just a matter of the physical difficulty compromised but my tiredness, but my ability to be motivated, think things through, come of with a plan, and carry through with it.
• I've had a life-long problem with neatness and cleanliness; it just doesn't come naturally tome and never has. I don't seem to have a gene for neatness. I wish I did. It's exactly laziness, though some might define it that way. I'm capable of very hard work. I didn't graduate magna and summa cum laude on brains alone, I actually had to work. I didn't write several complete first draft novels without investing time energy and work. I didn't run the planetarium and the Martin Luther King program without a great deal of work. I didn't get an MFA in creative writing at Vermont College without a really lot of work. I can work, but I can't seem to clean and organize the house, and I feel as if I am getting worse, not better.
• I suffer from Posttraumatic stress disorder due to having been raped and physically and emotionally abused. I'd like to get help but everyone ignores me when I ask for help. While my choices are clearly my responsibility, there are certain thing I need help with and that is one. Posttraumatic stress effects mood (mood disorders, anxiety), relationships, ability to concentrate, motivation, etc. For example, it would behoove Keith in our relationship to encourage rather than discourage my healing in this regard. I can't guarantee that if I'd been offered assistance instead of put on a waiting list at rape crisis that my house would be neater and better cared for, but it might be. It might well be. Fat, grouchiness and messiness may in part be a way that I keep people, especially men, at arm's distance. It may be that if I felt safe in the world, I would be healthier, happier and more productive. Or not.
• I also had motivational difficulties because the house was only half mine and anything I did to improve it would be at least half lost in the sale of the house. I'm sure this is a terrible shortcoming on my part that might have been able to be overcome to some extent with better communication with Bruce, but I would write to him or call him about problems and I rarely if ever heard back from him, Usually had tow rite 4,5,or 6 times or more to get a short cryptic answer and months would go by and nothing would happen. I do realize that HE also was very busy and not particularly motivated to talk to me, but if we'd been able to communicate better and share the burden of problems, I imagine things would have worked out better. I do think I made an effort in this direction, but apparently it wasn't enough and half the blame belongs to me.
Not that assigning blame solves anything. I know I am NOT blameless in this. I am NOT trying to shuffle off the blame elsewhere. I failed to care properly for the house. For whatever reasons, I failed.
The problem now is to find a solution that will work for everyone involved. I realize there may not be one that works for everyone, but we have to try.
One possible solution is for Erin to take over the FHA mortgage that Bruce and I are currently holding. First, we'd have to find out if that was even possible. I think it might be, since she's our daughter, but I don't know that. Then there are to her problems with that option:
• It won't provide her with money to make improvements
• It won't provide money to pay off Bruce and me.
It's possible that we could hold the mortgage and Erin could pay us, but that sounds to me like a recipe for disaster. It would be a brewing place for anger, resentments and misunderstandings. It would not give her the autonomy she needs, and if she had to give us money, she might grow to hate us.
I could just give her my portion of the house, but that would not really be fair to me, to Keith who has to support me if I don't work, or to Sara, since I can't give her something of equal value.
I'm still out walking at 6:30. The sun is getting lower and lower, but it is still hot, uncomfortably hot, oddly hot in the sun and cool in the shadow.
I'm walking slowly because my fibro is quite bad. I can't walk any faster; it hurts enough as it is.
I feel like a loser. That's why I want to make excuses for my failures, my total abject failures. Last night, lying awake unable to sleep, I felt so bad, and guilty and so at fault for the failure of the appraisal that I considered suicide. The idea was that if I were dead, Bruce would own the house outright and Erin could have it. Keith could toss out all my boxes and save his life from my failures and messiness.
I considered suicide and decided against it. For one thing, I'm a coward. For another, in spite of my pain and my tiredness, my insomnia and fibromyalgia and the house dragging out, there is still much good in this world and in this life. I love Keith and want to make a life with him, I love Graham and want to see him grow up, and I love Sara and Erin, my friends and my family. I love my writing and my photography and my art. I'm hoping against hope that somehow this will all work out.
Meanwhile, I am lugging cameras and gear that I'm not using and my back hurts and my knees hurt and my hips hurt and what I am looking forward to when I get home is more packing and sorting and cleaning, which I hate. The truth is, I hate it, and I don't know how to change that.
Figure I've been such a bad person that I'll probably die and go to hell, and hell will be more of this cleaning and sorting. Forever, in a hopeless ever-expanding mess.
Some days, I walk this route through Kimbrook and get back home and still have to walk 6-10minutes, but today I may not make it back in 45. My hips are really bad.
Scott wanted me to come and camp at Silk Creek and I would love to do that BUT
• I have all this work to do
• I think all three of my tents are in Detroit
• I need to buy one of those portable batteries if I want to camp away from the car because I have to wear my CPAP or I could die.
I am very depressed about how fat I am. I just keep getting fatter and fatter and nothing seems to help. I can't stop eating. Basically, I am a basket case. I'm doing nice art every night after I say goodnight to Keith, though!