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Saturday, March 12, 2011

Japan's taken a mighty hit, but life at home is going on as normal - feeling some guilt

Good morning this is me. We’re back to doing something not done for quite a while … we’ve got the netbook back. WooHOO!!! I’m not sure if we’ll stay here or go back to the big computer though … there are advantages to both.

It’s about 8 A.M. and we’ve already gone back to napping and hopefully are through with that. It takes so much good time. Basically we were up about 4 A.M. and wrote Linda, took care of email etc., and then Rich had to be gotten up and we came over to the couch to do all that, and then we fell back asleep. He got ready as that was happening and now he’s just left and we’re up getting the rest of our day going. I like the part of being tucked in on the comfy couch with my little station plus coffee and kitty. I KNOW the cat loves having the little computer back again. It’s just nice.

I think it has been a while since writing again. I might have to do what we’ve been doing as far as writing a little outline of things happening. Maybe we can then fill in between the lines.

• We had gone to the Mexican restaurant on Friday night
• Caught up on our writing Saturday and Monday
• CS new sewing machine
• Joining the WI guild in Mukwanago or Muk-muk
• Linda pretty much down for the week because of cold
• CS inheritance and how we’re dealing with it
• Bob coming over for dinner and awkwardness after he mentioned seeing Rich over at the jewelry store – Bob as instigator
• Looking at houses with Bob and Rich and Rich becoming negative
• Offer to marry Bob
• Trying not to be mad at Rich
• Maury stopped by for lunch on Tuesday
• Having an “Ann Marie Day” which is what Linda calls staying in PJs all day ;)
• Not going to WW like linda
• Just doing cutting at CS but maybe using the old Singer while up there
• Trying to get taxes taken care of
• Ordering from Teacher’s store and Amazon the decibel meters and program on directions
• Paying for the November retreat
• Joining the IL guild – Faithful Circle Quilters meeting on the 4th Wednesday
• Fat Tuesday
• Updating Annual package to include satisfaction surveys and preference interviews – starting to summarize
• CS being “around the corner”
• Getting a pin cushion
• Dr. Marvin day – being cranky around Rich
• Werewolf update
• Friday date night at the Italian place
• Staff training meeting with Sister – Spring Fling
• Signing up and paying for our retreat with partner
• Taking vitamins
• Downplaying on WW
• Doing the CIRCLES program
• Goal to finish 2nd scrap quilt

Lordy … so much happens from one event to the other … it’s about 9 A.M. I guess I’ve got my work in front of me. It seems that we are working into a pattern where we are writing less, but then making attempts to catch up. I’m not sure how the difference will be for the reader, but there’s a good chance we’ll be taking out some of the middle man stuff lesser item stuff. I’m not saying that everything I capture in the summaries is going to be REALLY important, but there’s no perfect process in writing … just gotta keep putting those thoughts and ideas out.

There is one thing that we want to mention before getting too far into today’s writing … it is the acknowledgement that Japan has just suffered the problems and life crisis of an 8.9 earthquake and then a tsunami that reached 6 miles inland. It’s just crazy all the chaos that it is just crazy the impact on that community and others involved in the worry care and concern over the Japanese people. We turned on CNN news at work on the computer and we recommended doing the same for the Leadership group so they get an idea on what is happening … since we got home then from work yesterday and now this morning (away from Rich’s programming) we’ve been listening to things that are happening.

There is a lot going on with recovery, but no one really knows how bad it is. The difference this time is there are more videos coming in because of how electronic the Japanese people are even without cell phone and electrical coverage. There are other things too like being able to have clean water, fires, and a nuclear plant that might be leaking radiation. So far they are saying there have been 83 aftershocks and it’s the 5th largest earthquake in known history. It’s just an incredible disaster … I am going to be going back to my more trivial thing, but know this ongoing story is on in the background. It is one of the advantages in getting back the netbook and sitting on the couch rather than back turned toward it on the big computer.

I have always liked the little keyboard, but it is harder typing somewhat on it because how much closer we have to be keeping our arms in front of our chest. I hadn’t felt that before, but am realizing it now. Not a big deal … we are just looking for small differences. I have always like the touch, though I’m enamored with the keypad touch on the big keyboard. Yeeks I don’t want to be going into all that now … just maybe a transition from one point to the next.

At this point the US Reagan is just 2 hours away from being able to contribute 325 helicopters for search and rescue if invited by the Japanese government.

So starting from the top it seems that we’ve gone between one date night to the next. I have to be careful not to get too complainy in that we love being with Rich, but lately have been pretty selective in what we want to hear. There’s only so much for example we want to hear on his fishy world AND his aches and pains. I think this shows a bit of intolerance within our system, but I’d like to think there was more building of conversation rather than just reporting stuff. I don’t know how to get out of this mode though because I realize I do a lot of reporting as well. Even what we are doing now … we’re telling you what happened in a lateral manner, though we’re trying to include an ongoing conversation with how our mind is processing some of the events happening.

Ok, back to normal stuff. We’re going to try moving this next part along as a total package. It is more like an onion being discovered within layers of us.

Pretty much we are talking about CS windfall. We were very impressed with her in that … something must have happened because when we talked to her on the way home from work, she allowed the conversation to be focused on us totally. I can hear her pushing and straining but she did well with it and for her sake we avoided pulling her back more to the forefront of the conversation, because she’s been in this other world for now 4-5 months. One day or at least one call I figured she could afford to think through matters that weren’t self-centered.

I’m not saying this to be mean to her, but inheriting close to a million dollars in cash, papers, coins, house, and investments etc, has taken a toll on her, us, and others relating to her and Mark. I’d like to think of myself as a good support to her, but much has been happening she’s not overly aware of. We talked to Dr. M. of course about it getting back to his office after being in WI for another weekend.

He almost laughed when we questioned did it have something to do with the anger we were feeling toward Rich this week.

One of those outbursts came after Bob instigated a deal on us not being married or having a house and although it couldn’t be said directly … we have no real money either. I don’t know how Rich does this in his brain, but you can tell differences between us in us having someone to talk to and process where he does not.

For example, he’s had almost 4 years now to process his separation and divorce from his wife, but he’s done little with that. Similarly it’s been almost four years and his son has not processed that life is now different. I think in not fixing problems there is a lot more tension build-up which includes the formation of anger and its residue. Dr. M. said something this week about feelings being transient, but that they need to come out in some kind of expression and then be listened too if not validated, and then they recess until the next set of concerns stimulate the individual’s emotional balance. Well he didn’t say it like that, but it’s somewhat accurate.

I know the best thing I can do for Rich is to listen, but he rarely talks about feelings or emotions unless its something more directly between us. He wants to avoid dealing with his pains by hiding behind the fishing. That’s not a professional diagnosis, but I think also it is close. He does a lot of practical things too suggesting he is living in the present, but it’s not really future focused. For example, he can do the washing and drying downstairs, but he cannot put together the next step as to what will make that situation better – either in a machine upstairs or moving to another living place – it seems that it hurts him even to think of expanding these thoughts. I think pretty much he puts the thoughts on me as if getting married or moving was one of our problems and that he doesn’t need to be affected. BUT, his not moving forward is affecting us, because we cannot do it alone.

I think he’s having small problems in just the savings aspects we’d talked about … I don’t know what it would take from his end to be putting together his portion, but I have not seen my portion. He sees it as $250 he doesn’t have to give me, but because we had money in the bank, he thought he could get by without taking it as our payment and putting it into a savings location. We’ll have more conversation on that now that it is the weekend. I want to see the money and that it be sitting in a tangible place we can look at it to assure its presence. I will never agree to put the joint money in Rich’s savings deposit box, because I believe his son would try to obscure it if something were to happen to Rich … This is something between him and doesn’t affect the thousands going out monthly to take care of the livelihood of his ex and son.

I won’t say much past that … but know that this other idea of saving something toward a house is supposed to help get past the other situation. I understand the value of saving money towards those ends. I need to focus on that as to our situation and that of his ex and son and the situation even between CS and Mark.

We’re definitely the underdog without their income, inheritences and having houses. It is a very humbling experience.

More of this will come up through Dr. Marvin, but it is something we need to be dealing with.

One of the new things this time was with CS getting her new sewing machine. I feel better in self-defining what we have and don’t have, but we feel a little cranky in that we’ve worked so hard to communicate with her once or twice a week and then her telling each of our sewing friends of the new machine before she told us. Due to the immediacy of the twins getting to her place and making an official announcement it’s obvious the situation was being manipulated. You KNOW where we are with that kind of thing. She is very particular as to what she allows to be known and not known. When you talk to her you can get a better idea of her thinking processes which by many means is the relationship to holding friendships, but she’s not doing it naturally. It is very controlled.

There was a good thing that happened this week in that Linda and I got together and we’ve both now paid for the November retreat and the arrangements to be sharing a room together. It was a $299 expense, but it will be Wednesday at 3 through Sunday at noon, which is about four entire days meaning that each day lodging, entertainment and food is costing us about $75. It’s really not a bad price consider $125 for a hotel alone is pretty normal. Because the women that get together are so wonderful … it is worth the cost.

I think the one thing I’d like to consider this weekend if Linda was open is spending periodic visits to our place. She’d have to be comfortable sleeping in the sewing room on the couch. I feel bad for not being able to offer her a bed, but it’s the best we could do. I’d like to think also of her considering a joint membership in the Faithful Guild as well as maybe the Muk-muk one that the twins are talking about. It would be a balance of about $50 between the two and there are advantages to both including retreats, meetings and shows – along with sharing friends and having activities we could share between us. I figure that the twins or Linda could tell me what was going on with their meetings and we could convey the Wednesday meetings here, and that we could get together more often for Friday/Saturday events.

It is a lot to figure out and all of this includes cost and time so it’s trickier than might be seen. I do think that if we got into the swing of it … it is something we’d all get used to.

There we just wrote an email to the girls. I don’t know if anyone is interested, but I wrote of three options … basically, 1) if someone else would, I would join the mukmuk guild near the twins, 2) they could join me in joining the Downer’s Grove Group, or 3) they could stay here and do some work – and we’d put them up the $55 for the motel down the street. They could always upgrade. We could have one person sleeping over, but after that we’d need extra space, but I figure we have the sewing room tables, the drafting table and space for a couple of machines on the kitchen table. I’d like to see it tried before thinking it couldn’t be done.

Maybe Linda would come down first and give us a good mark. I’ve invited CS, but I don’t think she’s as willing to travel. She hasn’t in all this time so far. We’ll see.

Should be moving on – but you did catch that part where we have joined the guild in Downers Grove? It is 9 miles or 20 minutes away and offers great programming.

They have membership open to 175, but are like about 135 now. They can be found at http://www.fcquilters.com/

Anyway … we should be moving on … we’ve been playing with this a bit.

Shoot shoot … Vicki just wrote a short note and it appears her heart is acting up.

It’s personal so I won’t say more, but this has added a concern. I know that Vickie is very stable, but it’s ok we worry some. I am having problems focusing though so we’re thinking we need to plow ahead. It is now 11 A.M. so we’re going to write just for the next hour and then turn ourselves over to the sewing. Linda hasn’t written back this morning so I’m hoping she got time out with Tony. We’ll see.

Maybe we should think through the situation of being mad around Rich at night. Dr. Marvin seems to think that its just because he is around. That makes sense, because we couldn’t think of much we were directly angry with him for … there was the little skirmish with Bob being over on Monday night for dinner. He was fooling around and offered up to the conversation that he saw Rich at the Jewelry store the other day. I know this was triggersome and we were thinking stop stop we don’t have to go there, but without to much more effort we were there none-the-less and not talking to anyone in the middle. We were nice to Bob when he left, but then we didn’t want to talk to Rich for a while.

He came to see us with his puppydog eyes after Bob had gone … he was looking for a smooch. We were too cranky for it. But, we took to heart he needed one … and so we worked at getting calm again. Next time he came back we were more loveable and forgiving. I don’t know if he knows what he’s being forgiven for … Don’t think we really want to go into it … it’s a big deal always the first thoughts are that we are not good enough. But, then from what Dr. M. was saying was that some of the anger – a good part of it was in going through another weekend with CS. Being with the friends is good and maybe even parts of CS are good … she’s not a bad person, just she’s going through a difficult experience, and is often the case we have to bend ourselves around her situation instead of it being the other way.

We’re going to need to keep going through that conversation. It is one of those things that I believe if I were a better person or happier with my life it would be less trouble to accept she now has a fortune, homes, and husband and I have none.

I don’t know it seems like it’s a lot of feeling sorry for myself. I don’t mean to be this selfish, but it calls to question for me my sense of worth and value in this world and to Rich in particular. I think these feelings from the depth of what we’re feeling have probably crossed paths with how we have felt about ourselves in the past. It’s too much to go through here out loud, we’ll probably continue just touching on it as a marker and doing the heavy duty work with Dr. M. He’s our safety.

I told Bob he was going to need marrying us and he said he’d get back to us with it. I’m pretty sure Rich isn’t going to give us that kind of permission though.

I’m looking over my list thinking I don’t really feel too good to be talking of much of it right now even with 45 minutes left on the clock. I’m thinking maybe a little on work in that we’ve been doing quite a bit to pull together our annual package. As stated above we added the satisfaction survey and personal preference interview to the package which has made it that much more valuable. We still think the next progression is to make summary paragraphs from the material presented … I think if we did enough we’d be able to progress that situation without as much a sticky feeling.

For the record we got done with part of those last two clients, but got stuck on their goals. We ordered a few things for the goals so I’m a little confused as to making them all up without getting in the materials to test them. One of the doohickeys was a tester to test the decibel (noise) level. I’m really excited about that … hmm, did we tell you that part already – we brought it past sister and the DSPs and it seems to be accepted by everyone though it might fall on me to figure it out step by step. The other program (though about 4 were ordered) has something to do with following instructions like go right, left 2 blocks, etc.

Until I can open those programs I should pause though I might finish off the other goals that have nothing to do with these. Sometime on Monday or preferably Tuesday we need to continue these two persons six goals, do a goals and objective for one that’s missing, and then do the change work to rewrite three peoples goals that the DSPs have brought to my attention. That then like what? Like 10 goals I guess.

To be safe I should do them between Monday and Tuesday, but I want to advance this other part too.

The new system worked pretty much in talking with 2 of the 3 ISSA workers who stopped by on Friday. One didn’t bother to talk with me though I was available – it was though too the secretary’s faults for letting her in the building without letting me know. I’ll talk to sister about that. It is kind of a statement as to her belief that I’m not very important in dealing with the clients, yet is inadequate. Ok, let’s not get into that. Pretty much though its another frustration.

We lost some of our order over the week in that not everything got marked down in our notebook. That’s REALLY frustrating, but things were starting to stockpile on each other and without proper borders between projects, we go from one thing to another without being able to process correctly. Dr. M. had a marker down in that we’d told him we started our day with two ice cream sandwiches. He basically said that should have been a clue that things weren’t going right. We are still trying to get through the food intake this morning. We skipped a proper breakfast and ate instead leftover hamburger. Yah like that was good for us 

It should have also been a marker that we didn’t eat breakfast at all this week except while we were home, and then we ended up at work feeling starved to death.

That led us getting into some peanut butter that was sitting around and it opened us up to getting a 13 point coffee cake before seeing Dr. Marvin. We gained some control, but we’re wavering. All of that maybe started around Rich getting the chocolate stuff for Fat Tuesday this week. He gave us over two days time 3 chocolate fudge like frosting cookies – large and two pieces of chocolaty fudge cake. Yes, he should be able to do nice things for us and we definitely liked eating them, but we also know in frustration that we shouldn’t be eating those kinds of stuff because we are not able at this point to restrain ourselves. So he wasn’t helping … We talked to him since, but not in great depth. Just he has to know it’s not a good idea and neither of us have gotten on the scale over the last two weeks. Not a good deal, nor is it that Linda has not been to her club either.

I think we need to get a one up on this … I’ll make lunch – a sandwich in the next half hour and perhaps a fruit or pudding snack at 2:30-300 P.M. but other than that … no more snacking no matter what Rich brings back with him. I had heard him say he has to go shopping and I know that to be true.

Ok, Dr. Marvin … we are at it again … yes after the hamburger’s dinner/breakfast, but can only work here in the present, right?

There was a fun part to having done the work with the annuals, in that Gary and Kathy did let me know they were in – though only Kathy volunteered that … Gary was trying to avoid us. He was in the Thinking Group having clients sign papers, but he wasn’t really spending time with them, me or the papers so in essence a proper visit … that will be part of what we explain to Kathy by having them in without talking to them proper. One of them was saying that they no longer needed signatures except at staffings. I’m going to bring that to call too.

BUT, when we gave them our updates on their clients, I could see how appreciative they were. It’s got everything they could be looking for, but with far less time and energy needing to put into it. We did also have a long extended talk with Kathy and Rich about goals. Basically they had both been to a meeting from Kathy’s superior at her work and he had a different idea as to what goals were and how they should be made up. So between the three of us, we came to better terms of how things should be. There was pretty much agreement all along, though it was different then told how to do things before. And there is more restrictions Kathy is trying to add to the goal procedure that I don’t believe is happening with all the ISSA, but theoretically it is a good idea to check out goals before changing them with others like the family and Kathy, just that it is bothersome. I know when a goal isn’t working because of something with the client or event the staff.

It’s a political thing to think it has to be checked out with the state.

Pretty much though what is being said is that we can make the generic goal more general and then work within the agency in change objectives or methods to get the goal on one track. We’ll be thinking of that as we process these next 10 goals.

The general part? With 24 clients I’m expected to track 72 goals. It is crazy to think that each time we can contact 3-4 people to make that arrangement … Life just isn’t that perfect. It bemoans the part where DSPs can see problems in-between the other things that are more problematic and need direct attention. Basically Kathy was saying you still need to do the other goal, but you can add goals. There isn’t a magic three number as we’ve been going under. I do know in the past CSO reps have yelled if we didn’t have three, but I can’t do anything about that until I happen to talk to someone beside Kathy. She tends to say things are gospel instead of acknowledging she’s just interpreting. It’s the same kind of problem I have in listening to things from Holly. But, I suppose that be the human element. I would like to see their rule books if they are going to be putting out statements as facts. As soon as we can … we’ll have to go through some of the regulations to see if any of this is laid out. Even the part where David her boss was telling in no uncertain terms are we to do less than contact the agency with our correspondents and then their secretaries will get it to where its supposed to go … you get the ISSA people saying not circumvent that by sending me the paperwork directly on line or through faxes – the very thing the agency is trying to get past. These kinds of things make me frustrated. I just want one rule and it better be valid.

Please?

Ok, maybe we’re not ready for a full work talk yet. I did know that after Gary caught on to I wasn’t going to bust him for the sneakyness of signing clients without seeing them, and that instead I was giving him valid information – well I’d like to think that’s going to work for me. I think we’re back to the mode of wanting to be a model business. Every step is closer toward working on CARF … I know that has to be a part of my everyday life.

Ok, we’ve gotten to our self-imposed deadline. We would like to push ahead … even though I think the quilting is going to be harder than writing or doing work work.

I know this is the time I’ve got reserved for it so I should take advantage of it.

Besides … that would help me when talking to Dr. M. to know that I was doing things in their proper perspective. Maybe if I took just one last look at the list to assure I’ve got everything I can in the time available.

I guess just a couple more things … I would like to foreshadow that the Spring Fling is coming. Sister has us in charge with Rich the silent bidding. That should work out fine. She’s trying to take pressure off the couple who usually take care of it because they are having so many life struggles. We’ll try to let them help with as little interruption to their life as possible. I think Rich is of the nature, he can take it over with my assistance, but it’s going to need work too next week. We have to put descriptions and estimated costs on all that has come in or that Imelda has put together. I think the DSPs are responsible for their own things, but the bigger items will go in the silent auction. I remember that I did work last year and then both the family and the fundraiser person who were supposed to be taking care of it … didn’t do the part assigned to me, but then there were grumbles that it wasn’t done their way. I don’t really know what to do about that. I’d like to think I did it as well as possible for their lameness in identifying items and their true costs. Maybe I’ll find it different, but we’ll check on it Wednesday and start the chore.

The last thing was about the werewolves. All I want to say there is that I have nagging feelings of my granddaughters being ok. I know that Maury will always do his best, but I still hold an opinion that allowing them to have a relationship to me, especially when someone else outside the family is in a disciplinary role and has a LOT of anger issues … well that can’t be good. My part toward it this week was keeping communications open with Maury and watching my first werewolf vampire show. Blah … It was like a soap opera! I get frustrated thinking they don’t see the anger issues involved.

Hmm, better try to end on a good note. It’s really really windy out there right now. But, that is neither good nor bad.

Hmm, one more thing about the Japanese disasters … they are really saying positive thing about the social media and how its helping people to connect. This is a good thing … I’d like to end on that note of hope.

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