Thursday, January 2, 2014

Dear Universe, This is My Holiday Post

A lot has happened in the past couple of weeks; I’ve had some time off from work, my apartment flooded, and I got in some good quality time in with the family. My week off from work has flown by as if it was only one day, and I suppose that’s to be expected. It’s been nice not working and I’m not happy about going back, but I feel like I’m doing things to help my situation and that helps me not feel hopeless. I’ve even got some new year’s resolutions that I’m going to get to in a minute.

                My apartment flooded Saturday night; the carpets were soaked and even had little puddles here and there and there were about three inches in the kitchen. Luckily, my clothes closet, bathroom, and the closet where I keep my litter boxes were spared (I don’t even want to think about soaked litter boxes!). At first, it was just too overwhelming. When I got home that evening there were already maintenance men in my apartment trying to suck out the water with various hoses. My cats were frightened and stranded on the windowsills and each step I took in my apartment just made disgusting sucking noises. I was grateful I had chosen to wear boots, especially when I waded through the kitchen to check out the situation. 

                I text-ed pretty much everyone that I knew (this isn’t the kind of thing that happens every day) and was just about to order a pizza - cooking in a kitchen full of water did not seem like a good idea – when my dad texts me back saying they have an extra litter box with fresh litter and that I should go there. So I packed up my cats and headed out.

                My cats are super-pals but they’re very different from one another. I have an ultra-friendly, the-world-is-my-oyster grey tomcat (Ditto) and a there-was-a-small-noise-the-apocalypse-is-happening-now! moody little tortie queen (Cleopatra). Guess who was yelping in a high-pitched voice the whole way to my parent’s house? No, that was Ditto. Because when it comes to car rides, he’s a sissy. Seriously, I think his voice went up a whole octave. Cleopatra was uncharacteristically quiet, perhaps thinking, “dude, not even I’m that much of a diva.”

                Once I got to my parent’s house Ditto gave Cleopatra her diva-status back, and greeted everyone with enthusiasm while his friend hid under the bed for the next four days. The trip has made me consider that maybe Ditto needs a house with at least five people and two stories because he was so excited to see everyone and spent all his time wandering around, exploring every little thing he could get into.

                So I spent Christmas with a little more family time then I’m used to. The first couple days were fine, and Christmas was really nice. It really is something special that my family gets together every year to open presents and be together even though things are kind of crazy with my grandfather in a nursing home in the next state over. My mom was so busy going back and forth to take care of him that she didn’t have time or energy to do any Christmas decorating or preparation. But, my dad and sister took care of the cooking and my sister, brother and I did the decorating. We even had some family friends come by and give my mom a fully-decorated Christmas tree for the porch! I feel lucky that my parents have such great friends.

                After our little family gift exchange, we traveled to my cousin’s house for lunch and then on to my grandfather’s nursing home for a visit. My mom had to stay there to help out so my dad and I cooked a small dinner at my grandmother’s place. It was odd since that’s the usual site of our large family holiday dinners and grandpa is usually the one to do most of the cooking. It was really strange to see him unable to remember what happened in the last hour and unable to stand up or walk on his own. He was still telling his bad jokes, though; whenever he did speak it was in puns.

                We had to stay an extra day to help get grandpa to cancer care and help grandma fight the nurse who kept refusing to give grandma the help she asked for. Most of the nurses were very caring, but this was an obstinate one. My mom was able to contact a superior and I think she may have gotten the nurse in trouble, but I heard the way that nurse talked to my grandma and she deserved to get in trouble!

                Things went downhill mood wise for me on the way back to my parent’s house. Somehow I missed taking my meds for two days, probably because of the change in routine. When I was able to visit my apartment, I was super-thrilled (read angry) to find that it smelled like death and the carpet was filthy. The maintenance man had promised me that they would clean the carpets by Wednesday at the latest; which I thought was odd since that was Christmas, but he still said Wednesday! By Friday it still wasn’t done and I was seriously livid. My parents were getting on my last nerve and my apartment was still a crazy wreck. I had to throw so many things out because they were soaked and smelly. I still need new bookcases, but I think for now I can live with the old ones as long as I don’t sniff them. I lost a lot of books, too, and a ton of cat toys. One of the scratching posts was actually broken in half (how the F did that happen??). 

But anyway, if I talk too much about that I’ll get too angry again. Fast-forward a few days and my carpets are clean (I didn’t have to yell too much), and my furniture is in the proper places. Laundry’s still not done, but I can only do so much. And, I’m looking forward to a new year with plenty of optimism and a new master list of hopes and changes to make.

Hopes and Changes
  •  Bring back Spa Saturday: Every Saturday morning I will pamper myself with any lotions, body scrubs, deep hair conditioners and soaks that I own. 
  •  Paint nails once a week
  • Get new glasses 
  • Get a haircut
  • Make sure to blow-dry my hair after showering because it looks 100% better
  • Shower at least every other day
  • Start weight watchers
  • Re-start yoga 28-day challenge and do cardio every third day
  •  Make a zazzle store with my photography
  • Start crafting on etsy
  •  Be more regular with blogger posts
  •  Continue to work on getting away from the tv and doing other things that I like
  •  Develop my hobbies and interests
  • Set up a savings account for graduate school
  •  Interview teachers, social workers and psychologists to see if I would like to do their job
  •  Commit to keeping the kitchen clean
  • Look at other apartment complexes, especially with second-floor apartments
  •  Work on making my apartment a home that makes me feel more comfortable
  • Work on preparing for things ahead of time so I can be on time and prepared in general and when I go out
  •  Set up my new therapy light and sunrise/sunset-simulating alarm clock (Christmas gifts to myself)
  • Spend more time playing with my cats, it helps all of us be happier

         So, I hope all of you out there had a lovely holiday. And even if it wasn’t perfect or even that good at all, I hope there were good moments that you can concentrate on. As Lizzy Bennet would say, “In such cases as these, a good memory is unpardonable. “ (Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice)


  1. Aaahhh! Oh no! I feel like the universe got confused and sent my kind of luck into your life! 3 inches of water, what?! That is hoooorrrrrible. The fact you didn't kill anyone is commendable on so many levels.

    The situation with your Grandpa is very similar to ours with my Grandmother... its so difficult to see all of those changes, and as much as you know that it's just a part of life it doesn't stop making it sad. My Grandmother forgets everything from one moment to the next, but-- she cracks jokes every chance she gets :)

    I like your list of ambitions and hopes-- especially those related to taking more care of yourself/pampering. That stuff is important! I think it sounds like you've got the makings for a pretty spectacular year.

    1. Thank you, Aussa. I hope 2014 is an excellent year for you as well.