Compulsive hoarding is a mental disorder that is just beginning to be understood. As a hoarder, I have acquired things over the years with a specific purpose in mind at the time of the acquisition, used some of those items for their intended purposes, forgotten the goal for different objects, but now that I find that they have outlived their purpose in my life I am struggling to rid myself of those same things.

You can read the start of my journey here.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Not much to report.

The anxiety meds are doing their job, and I'm feeling much less anxious and better able to cope with all that's going on.

However, we've been sick with the crud, which has kept my progress at, well, under ideal. I'm not sure, if this is the flu or not. We've been totally exhausted. Absolutely no energy at all makes it more than difficult to accomplish a single thing. We haven't had high fevers, but we have been feverish. Then again, we didn't get high fevers when we had the swine flu a couple years ago, either. :::shrug::: It's enough that we're miserable. I guess we don't need a name for it. 





To top things off, my extended family has been going through an awfully lot lately, and my heart hurts for all of them.

In the last 6 weeks or so a sister in law lost both her parents, a niece lost a pregnancy, 2 different cousins lost their husbands, and a brother in law lost his brother. And while none of it directly affected me, thoughts for my loved ones weigh heavy.

We've been a bit nervous for Bugster. She quit her job a few weeks ago, because her paychecks were bouncing. Job + bouncing payroll checks is not a good combination. One employee was behind 4 paychecks. Another was behind 6. I just can't imagine working for 8 and 12 weeks without pay. Bugster stayed longer and more loyal than either Hubster or I would have, but she's just can't stand the thought of someone else being put in a bind. We're glad she's out of there, but we can't help but worry for the kids a bit. It's a parent's job, right?

I did get back in touch with a friend I'd lost touch with about 8 years ago. It was wonderful getting caught up, but she's had it really rough. Just a lot of family problems in that period of time, including losing her fiance just weeks before their wedding. My friend doesn't have computer skills and is totally intimidated by them, so she took his daughter's word for it that her fiance had died out of state. Except that he hadn't. He's alive.

I would want to know under the same circumstances. And I would want a friend to tell me, rather than finding out from someone else, so I felt like I had to say something. It was one of the most difficult calls I've ever had to make, and I hope I never had to break news like that again. As hard as it was to hear, my friend was thankful I cared enough to tell her. I just hope she heals quickly. 

I debated long and hard before telling her. I polled a few friends and family about whether or not they would want to know. Everyone I asked said they would want to know, if they were in her shoes, but some would not have told her to spare her feelings. How about you? Would you have wanted to know?

On a different note I've made a little bit of progress. I've finally frozen all but the last cookie sheet of tomatoes. I'm just waiting for them to ripen, although I may try my hand at fried green tomatoes. I haven't had the energy to try them just yet. At this point, they'll just be fried green tomato chips, since the tomatoes that are left are just tiny. Still. They'd probably be good along with some fried zucchini as a snack or on spaghetti. 

No word yet on the guardianship front. I'll be calling the attorney this week to see where we are in the process. 

And once again I'm so very thankful for the anxiety meds, since just writing the above sentence made my stomach start with the flips again. 

Have I mentioned we're ready for 2012 to make its entrance?

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Immobilization. It's not as fun as it sounds.

What I didn't mention in my last post from a couple of weeks ago is that I've really been struggling lately. I said that we had a really long and stressful day getting state IDs and flu shot and all the week before and made 7 pints of salsa. And I mentioned that I was still getting things done.

However, my effectiveness as a person slowed to almost a complete halt during the days after that outing. Dehoarding stopped. Most house work and laundry came to a screeching halt. Yep. I have been pretty worthless.

The night before we spent the day getting the documentation for the girls that was needed my stomach started churning. Flipping. Rolling, if you will. Nonstop. Like I had a hamster on a wheel in the pit of my gut. It didn't stop at all for over 2 weeks.

You know how your stomach jumps when you see a baby almost fall headfirst down the stairs? Or you see a ball roll out in front of you in the street while you're driving, and you notice a small child in your periphery? Or you witness an accident caused by an erratic driver? 

Yeah. That kind of flipping.

When my stomach did finally stop flipping it was short lived. As in about 18 hours or so. And then it started up again. I felt like I was going to jump out of my skin. Even when I was expecting a call, I'd nearly jump out of my skin when the phone actually rang. I felt like I was trembling all the time, but when I would hold my hand up to check to see, if it was shaking, it wasn't. I was just shaking on the inside. 

I made an appointment to see my doctor, but I had to cancel the first one due to bad roads. The last thing I needed to do is get in a car and drive on ice in the condition I was in. I knew I needed help, and that I was having a problem with anxiety. I also knew that I didn't know how to make it stop on my own. That I needed help. Because when your stomach is flipping and turning all the time like that, it's hard to concentrate. To eat. To sleep. To function.

The doctor confirmed that I was suffering from anxiety. The only other time I've had anything even close to this happen was when I had a reaction to a medication a few years ago. I have to wonder, if that reaction made my body more susceptible to anxiety. I guess it doesn't matter. I have it now. 

We met with the attorney on Monday. Plunked down the $500 for the court costs, but we won't actually have to pay the attorney's fees. Hubster signed up for some sort of legal plan through the company he works for last year, and it pays the attorney. And although we could technically do this on our own, we'd much rather have the expertise a lawyer can lend to the situation. I shudder at the thought of what the anxiety would be like, if we weren't going through an attorney!

I have no doubt that the stress is due to the whole guardianship thing, and I believe it will go away once everything is completed. I am thinking I'll likely start 2012 in a totally different state than I'm in right now, but until then I'll stay on the meds the doctor prescribed. They've already helped tremendously, and it's been less than a week.

Thursday, Bugster came over, and we made salsa together. Once we tasted the salsa I'd made awhile back, we realized that it wasn't going to be enough to get us all through the winter. So we made a day of it and canned 14 pints and 1 quart, since we couldn't find the last of the pint jars. We're set until next Fall when we'll likely make more from the tomatoes, peppers and onions we'll hopefully have in our gardens. 

I'm still behind on housework, but I know I'll be able to get it done in plenty of time for the home visit. I won't have all the dehoarding done, but I'm confident that we'll pass with flying colors. I'm sure we'll be granted guardianship, because the best place for the girls to be is with us. In their own home. With their family. And when I look at each part of the guardianship process individually, I know we'll do fine. But the whole of it is more than overwhelming.

Hubster asked me out on a date the other night. We need time to reconnect and get away from the stress of it all, so I jumped at the chance. Hopper and Scooter are going to spend the day with Bugster, Hubster and Frank after we all do a little shopping together.  We haven't all been out together in months. In fact, Scooter just started back to school this past week after the whole fiasco of the hospitalization, head-to-toe rash, and weeks of steroids to get the allergic reaction under control. So we need this as a family. All of us.

I'm ready for some decompression.