icewolf: (research)
I know, I know. I've been a real Debbie Downer (you should excuse the phrase) recently.

But. But!

Things are better.

Period has started, so the hormonal bombardment has eased. Food and medication in regular doses is happening. I actually have energy and motivation to tackle the disaster area my house is at the moment. And my syllabus. Oy vey, gevalt, even. My syllabus. I'm trying something new incorporating Lies My Teacher Told Me and I'm getting very A Beautiful Mind meets Fred Burkle in season 2 of Angel with the writing on the walls. (Is it so bad that I want an entire wall of the office done in blackboard paint? Is it so very weird? Don't answer that.)

Thanks to everyone who commented, either here or in some other medium. It's not why I make the posts (okay, it's mostly not why I make the posts), but they're appreciated anyway.
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
In my neverending quest to de-stigmafy (it's a word now, dammit) mental illness, I need to be honest. I haven't been particularly well. I haven't been back to my self-harming, stay in bed all day levels, but I've been... meh. Sleeping when my body isn't tired, mindlessly watching the Cooking Channel, even avoiding Facebook because it's just too damn much work.

When clicking the little squares to "harvest" imaginary crops is too much work, it's time to take inventory.

Some of this is my own damn fault. I haven't been taking vitamins, I've occasionally been somewhat spotty in taking my meds. They get taken 95% of the time, but of that maybe only 75% of the time am I taking them at the times I should be, which screws further with my sleep patterns. I'm not eating enough protein with breakfast or drinking a cup of coffee in the morning, two things I absolutely must do to overcome the sedative effects of the Lexapro I take.

Some of this is not my fault. I lost an aunt last week, and buried her at the beginning of this one. I was not particularly close with her, but have found that there is a hole in my inner patchwork where she's supposed to be. Her loss was also incredibly hard on my other aunt, with whom I am very close. To say nothing of my father and my uncle. Dealing with my mother was stressful, to say the least, as her stress levels rose above what her anti-anxiety drugs could deal with.

Also there has been a significant hiccup in my home life. Since some of you readers do actually know me in real life, I'm going to abstain from details, at least for now. I will say that it did not involve infidelity, and that my husband and I are going to be putting some really nice therapists' kids through college. That being said, though, it has sucked. It has sucked royally. It has sucked like Queen Elizabeth's very own private Dyson vacuum cleaner. It's left me sad, angry, and frustrated. And, quel suprise, depressed.

On top of this, it has become readily apparent that adjuncting just isn't bringing in enough money. I love doing it, but I can't afford to anymore. So I have begun my first active job search in about 9 years. God, I'd forgotten how much I loathe it.

So where do I go from here? I called mein guter Ehemann and told him how overwhelmed I felt. As always, he stepped up to the plate. We have made plans. Trader Joe's is a godsend for breakfasts you can grab and go. We're going to work on the practical aspects of our problems together tonight. I will double down on my self-care efforts, including getting my behind into the gym on a regular basis.

Sadly, I am not one of those people who get depressed sometimes, or who have one or two episodes in his or her lifetime. Those are awful enough, don't get me wrong. But this is an everyday struggle and it just gets so old sometimes, and I feel so powerless. But as I said about a year ago, onward I go. It's hard, but it's the only way to go.

Who am I?

Jun. 14th, 2011 02:44 pm
icewolf: snowy wolf (2009 snowflake)
I am Susan Ivanova, Commander, daughter of Andrei and Sophie
Ivanov. I am the right hand of vengeance, and the boot that is going to
kick your sorry ass all the way back to Earth. I am Death incarnate, and
the last living thing that you are ever going to see. God sent me.
icewolf: box of hearts (box of hearts)
As with every other hot internet mess I've either been a part of or witnessed (if you weren't there, don't ask. As someone else has said, your blood pressure doesn't need the workout.), I've at least made some nifty new internet acquaintances. :)

And, oh, yeah, I'm alive and stuff.
icewolf: snowflake (snowflake)
Okay, all things considered.

One thing I was not expecting was a social anxiety attack. And at a monthly bridge get together of all places!

Unfortunately, I knew only two people who were there, the host and his ex-wife. All the different people in a relatively small house and, yeah. Heart rate shot up, nausea, sweating, the whole shebang. I just wanted to snatch up Herself and flee. I haven't had one of those in years. So, uh, yeah, sorry about the weirdness, [livejournal.com profile] bkleber.

The good news is that soon enough it was time to go to my Star Wars RPG, run by one of my best friends, and with plenty of good and trusted friends around me. *contented sigh* Oh, and a shot of whiskey. Which didn't hurt.

If I had my druthers, I'd hide in the house most of the time. But I don't know how much different that is from usual. Ah, therapy. It's nice to know I'll be putting some nice Israeli kids through college.

Taking the whole week off work was worth it, though. I did have to handle some house-buying nonsense stuff, but that was blessedly minimal. It's a terrible thing to need it, but it's a nice thing that the world still gives families that suffer miscarriages some time and space.

So that's where I am. Thanks to the folks who commented on Facebook. I couldn't figure out how to turn off comments there, so I didn't. And that didn't turn out to be a bad thing. The support I got, and knowledge that people were thinking of me and my family have helped a lot. That goes for you nice folks on LJ and DW, too, who have commented on the subsequent post about the mildly inappropriate sonogram tech.

So, onward. Even though it's heartbreaking, it's the only way to go.
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
Okay, even if I didn't have a qualified psychiatrist suggesting it every time I turn around, it is enormously apparent, even to me, that I am finally surfacing from long-term, if median-level, Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

The amount of energy and motivation I have had since the weather warmed up late last week is positively astounding. I want to clean, I want to organize. I don't want to waste my days sleeping. Of course, I'm still having trouble with lethargy due to budeprion (even taking it before I go to bed isn't entirely helping), but I'm actually interested enough in the outside world to make the effort to overcome it! Hell, I shaved my legs above the knee yesterday! Yay me!

I've also noticed that I'm motivated to count WW points again. The idea of leaving the house is no longer an enormous chore to be avoided at all costs (of course, Herself's increased awareness and cooperation probably play a major role in this).

There's still enough pagan in me to really feel like now is the real beginning of the year. I made some, not resolutions, but plans back in January that I just now feel equipped to implement. They look a little something like this:

·         Taking care of myself physically

o   Go to bed earlier/get more sleep

o   Climb back onto WW wagon

o   Exercise

·         Writing

o   Finish “Damage”

o   Write a chapter a month of Unmanageable

o   Blog more often (especially on my "professional" blog over on Blogger)

·         Scholarship

o   Translate at least 10 lines a month--Latin, Anglo-Saxon, German, it doesn't matter

·         Teaching

o   Get Axia feedback in on time

o   Organize files on jump drive

o   Write more lecture posts

o   Do PowerPoints for Laurel lectures

o   Get feedback to Laurel students much more quickly
    

·         General

o   Keep up with Franklin planner

This last one is kind of key. I remember things better when I write them down manually. I get more writing done if I sit down to a paper and pen than if I sit down to a keyboard. I know for a fact that a human being is seven times more likely to remember something if it's written down. I can't keep lurching from deadline to deadline. I have to direct my schedule--I'll be miserable if I continue to let it direct me.

 

Of course this will all get enormously easier come May, when Herself starts daycare two days a week. But even before that, I need to make an effort to get her out of the house as well as myself. She's a high activity kid, and now that the weather seems likely to accommodate it, she just needs room to run. Fortunately, there's a honking huge city park half a block from the house with ball fields. I'm being very careful not to use food as rewards, to not pressure her to finish meals or snacks if she's no longer hungry, but she needs to see me moving around as well. Walking, biking, exercising--it has to be seen as the norm.

I know that this seems like a lot, but I won't be trying to do it all at once. One thing I did take away from the famous FlyLady is the way to form habits, and I'll be implementing these one by one. Hopefully, I'll have enough momentum (and full-spectrum light bulbs) to carry me through next winter. Wish me luck!

Yahoo!

Sep. 23rd, 2009 08:18 pm
icewolf: snowy wolf (muppet group shot)
The car's been recovered, and the detective is coming to pick us up now. Now to see what kind of shape it's in...
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
At least ten, if not eleven, years ago, I joined the Lois McMaster Bujold mailing list. Before I jumped ship before drowning in 600+ messages a day two to three years later, I made a friend. That friend is [livejournal.com profile] commodorified.

About three or so years ago, I noticed a friend of hers, [livejournal.com profile] angevin2, when browsing her Friends List. I seemed to have a lot in common with her--an interest in Shakespeare, medieval English kings, an obsession with what happens when you cross the streams of history and literature--and friended her accordingly.

Then, about a year ago, I noticed a really neat icon [livejournal.com profile] angevin2 had. It had been made by [livejournal.com profile] poisoninjest. After poking around her journal, I friended her, even though it didn't seem as though she had updated in a while.

Well, [livejournal.com profile] poisoninjest eventually came back, and we turned out to have a lot in common, so she friended me back.

On Sunday evening, after my house was broken into and my car stolen, I got an email from her asking for my USnail mail address.

Then these showed up today:

Photobucket

Photobucket (And isn't my lack of chin just disturbing? Stupid Smith gene pool.)

There were also a lovely pair of amber and pearl earrings as well.

The enclosed note read:

Sorry to hear about your car. Hope these cheer you up. I noticed you had them "hearted" on Etsy.


So thank you, [livejournal.com profile] commodorified, thank you, [livejournal.com profile] angevin2, and thank you most of all to [livejournal.com profile] poisoninjest. Also, if you like them, you should absolutely check out her Etsy shop, Idol Ceremony.

What did we do before the Internet?

Flyby...

May. 18th, 2009 11:02 am
icewolf: snowy wolf (happy birthday)
Hey, everyone. I aen'nt dead.

But I would like to wish [livejournal.com profile] rosered2318 a belated happy birthday, and to thank her for introducing me to the concept of hot coffee in the shower.

Huh.

Mar. 5th, 2009 06:57 pm
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
So, I just got an email referring to me by my husband's last name.

Today, a federal contractor referred to me by my husband's last name because he was told by the person he was investigating that that was my name.

I'm not offended by any of these things. It makes sense, especially for groups of people like the Rude Mechanicals, who knew me for all of twelve seconds before I got married.  They're just surreal. I always want to blink a couple times and ask, "I'm sorry, who?" Four years may be a little early to make such a pronouncement, but I don't ever think I'll self-refer to myself by my husband's last name. When I try to, I always trip over it or hesitate. It's not that I don't love him or don't want to be married. That's just not... me, I guess. Now, the hyphenated version just rolls off the tongue, even as long and kinda wacky as it is (it involves a z and two sets of double ses). Which tells me that I made the right decision. I keep calling myself what I called myself for thirty-one years before I got married, and I have a graphical connection to my husband and daughter. Win, win.

Just a stray deep thought for the day.

icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
Looking at the sturm und drang, the wailing and gnashing of teeth over on [livejournal.com profile] thehefner 's journal over the demise of [livejournal.com profile] scans_daily  got me to thinking.

Something that a lot of the folks who regularly read this journal don't know about me is that for about three years, I did risk management for Region 1 of Alpha Phi Omega. While, in theory, I also dealt with OSHA rules, and safety concerns on service projects, in reality, I dealt mostly with preventing allegations of hazing and damage control concerning alcohol. Yes, I've always been a paranoid worrier, a prime candidate for stage management.

And, I'll tell you, it gets old being a professional buzzkill, which is how most of the rest of the world sees you when you do things like risk and stage management in any kind of professional capacity. A lot of the time, it means having people think you're just a petty goody-two shoes trying to impose your neuroses on the world around you. And I was lucky: in the three years I worked with APO on risk management, my most difficult case was a drinking debacle at Maine Maritime Academy, and the members were awesome, took their punishment like the good sailors that they were (and are), and weren't sullen, or passive, or bitchy. But aside from MMA,  I still needed major political players standing behind me to get anyone to take the post seriously.

But, as Cheryl Smith, the Region 1 Director at the time, always told me when I got  discouraged (because I was still young and wanted people to like me), what I was doing was important. Alpha Phi Omega is a large organization, but not a particularly wealthy one. One mid-level lawsuit in the late 90s would have put a serious dent in operations. A big one, or more than one mid-sized, and the organization would have been toast.

Fast forward to my stage managing days, which I'm still in. Yes, the comedy club in Laurel had atmosphere, but it was a safety nightmare. The building had been condemned. Not only was I terrified that a wall was going to fall on someone (a distinct possibility given that mold and mildew, not to mention age and lack of upkeep, had eaten away a lot of the beam structures), and of the moldy drywall, of which there were yards, but there was also the God-awful possibility that one day were were going to show up to find the door chained, or the building knocked down, effectively shutting down the production of Midsummer that we were performing there. Atmosphere wasn't going to do diddly squat for us if the show never got performed.

The upshot is that it's not fun being the hall monitor, and being the friendly neighborhood grownup can suck hard. But rules are there for a reason. Yes, sometimes there are bad rules, but you need a better reason than "I want to do what I want!" to break them.  If you disagree with a law, or a rule, go for it. Have a good time. Write your congresscritter, lobby Washington, join an organization or start one. Talk to the rule-makers, ask for their why, and tell them your wherefore. Work to get the rule changed, but in the meantime, you're still not allowed to break it, especially when it comes to the law. Trust me, I understand the urge. I have been heartily tempted to break the rules "just this one time," but I can't. Not only do the what-ifs take over my brain (because, under Murphy's law, the one time I let the rule slide will be the time that something catastrophic happens, which the broken rule just so happens to exist to prevent), but there's principle involved, that the rules are there for safety, either yours or someone else's. Being a rule follower doesn't mean you're an unthinking drone, just like being a rule breaker doesn't automatically make people neglectful or careless.

This is something that's still very much a thought-work-in-progress. I like stage managing, and I liked doing risk management because I liked the fact that people were safer and happier (as a result of being safer) because I was around, doing what I do. Not to mention the fact that I'm uniquely suited to it. But I don't like the way that I, and other rule-followers and -enforcers, are often pigeonholed as uncreative, nattering automotons, mindless tools of The Man. I suspect it's the company I keep: I'm a techie awash in a sea of actors. And that's not bad, but they're two fundamentally different approaches to theater, and in many ways, life.

icewolf: snowy wolf (she runs lunatic)
'Cause [livejournal.com profile] packy  poked me!

Once you’ve been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 16 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 16 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it’s because I want to know more about you.

I'm not tagging anyone, but here we go.
  1. I'm not a registered anything. (Except to vote.)
  2. I hate being cold with a passion that really ought to keep me warmer than it does.
  3. The last five boyfriends I had before [livejournal.com profile] torberg all married the next girl they dated.
  4. I really want to get a first draft of Holly's book done by July 1.
  5. I was tagged for accidental plagiarism right before I graduated with my M.A. (I had tested out of 101, and had been flying by the seat of my pants for four years regarding documentation.)
  6. I actually took Latin in high school and positively detested it, learning only what was necessary to get a B on the test, and then would promptly forget everything.
  7. I still have a wicked crush on my husband.
  8. My grandparents, were they still living, would all be over one hundred ten years old.
  9. According to various doctors and professionals I've consulted over the past few weeks, I am a serious chronic depressive and will probably be on some med or another for the rest of my life. (Bonus fact: And I'm okay with that.)
  10. I read the Star Trek: The Next Generation novels in high school first, and then started watching the show.
  11. The first fantasy novel I ever read was Arrows of the Queen, which [livejournal.com profile] arakasi1 handed me the summer I was 19.  
  12. I grew up with a white miniature poodle named Boomer.
  13. I just don't feel ready to face the day until I have shoes on.
  14. My favorite tale of the martyrdom of Thomas Becket is the one written by his biggest fanboy, John of Salisbury.
  15. I think St. Jerome was so far back in the closet that he smelled of mothballs.
  16. "Shakespeare's Sister" and "A Room of One's Own," by Virginia Woolf, first turned me on to the serious impact writing could have.
icewolf: snowy wolf (dark mask)
...I'm not in a good place these days. I was reading over some of my more recent posts and I've turned into one mean bitch, no two ways about it.

At any rate, what all this is is a run-up to a blanket apology and a promise that I will work very hard at being a better member of your Friends Lists.
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
Look behind the cut for the new hair! )
icewolf: snowy wolf (me 2008)
...with a little vanity thrown in for good measure.

I'm getting my hair cut tomorrow. I mean cut. I can't stand to have my hair pulled, and Herself keeps thrusting sticky little fingers into my hair and yanking, so tomorrow, it's getting cut short.

Now, my hair isn't too terribly much longer than in my userpic up there. It comes just about to my shoulders. It's fine, but there's a hell of a lot of it. It also has one big wave when cut short.

Please post suggestions for haircuts in comments. I have no idea what I want to do, other than for it to be short and for me to not have to blow dry it.

Art quiz!

Oct. 20th, 2008 10:22 pm
icewolf: snowy wolf (medieval lady)

Your result for What Your Taste in Art Says About You Test...

Balanced, Secure, and Realistic.

27 Impressionist, 25 Islamic, 7 Ukiyo-e, -34 Cubist, -39 Abstract and 17 Renaissance!

Impressionism is a movement in French painting, sometimes called optical realism because of its almost scientific interest in the actual visual experience and effect of light and movement on appearance of objects. Impressionist paintings are balanced, use colored shadows, use pure color, broken brushstrokes, thick paint, and scenes from everyday life or nature.


People who like Impressionist paintings may not always be what is deemed socially acceptable. They tend to move on their own path without always worrying that it may be offensive to others. They value friendships, but because they also value honesty, tend to have a few really good friends. They do not, however, like people who are rude and who do not appreciate the ideas of others. They are secure enough in themselves that they can listen to the ideas of other people without it affecting their own final decisions. The world for them is not black and white but shades of gray and muted colors. They like things to be aesthetically pleasing, not stark and sharp. There are many ways to view things, and the impressionist personality views the world from many different aspects. They enjoy life and try to keep a realistic viewpoint of things, but are not very open to new experiences. If they are content in their live they will be more than likely pleased to keep things just the way they are.

Take What Your Taste in Art Says About You Test at HelloQuizzy



In other, sadder news, my laptop has gone to that big Nerd Herd in the sky. The monitor's kaput. *sigh* Ivanova served faithfully and well from April of 2002 until two Sundays ago. Thus does the bargain hunting for a new laptop begin.

(Also, the description of the quiz results has been edited for execrable spelling, crimes against commas and other punctuation, and confusing pronoun use.)
icewolf: snowy wolf (smite)
I just hit my annual limit for wise-asses, cynics, and "hipsters."

There's still 90 days till that limit gets reset. You've been warned.
icewolf: snowy wolf (miss grumpypants)
I am sick and I am thoroughly miserable.

Here. Have some dragons.

Adopt one today! ~*~ Adopt one today! ~*~ Adopt one today!
icewolf: snowy wolf (Herself)
I'm a nicer person and a better mom when I don't get worked up about political crap I read on LJ.

In other news, water is wet.

Yeah, so don't expect to see much of me until a week after Inaugeration (I figure the celebrations/declarations of Canadian citizenship should have subsided by then). If you bury major life events in a political post, I won't see it. You've been warned.

Oh, and I bred my dragons again:

Adopt one today!

And Bones just rocked tonight. I'm really looking forward to this upcoming season. Can I say, though, that Dave Boreanaz's British accent has NOT gotten any better. *snrk*
icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
I just discovered the British Folk genre channel!

*dances Herself around the living room*

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icewolf: snowy wolf (Default)
Icewolf

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