Socksurday and Other Random Musings


Here’s a random selection of the things that are going through my mind tonight.

Yesterday was a big day in the household, for reasons other than my first meeting with my new psychiatrist. Three years ago yesterday, my wife and I were up early and getting an unusually fast start to the morning. I think it was fueled by not having anything in the house for breakfast or being out of coffee or some other emergency, but I can’t imagine any other reason we’d be up and wanting to go to the store at 6:30 in the morning. Anyway, we opened the door and this little tuxedo kitten with no collar was standing right on the other side of it. It hesitated for just a brief moment and then walked right into the apartment. The place was very sparsely furnished at that point in time, so there was a lot of space for it to roam around and explore while we pet it and took pictures of it. Eventually we decided we needed to get to the store and do our shopping, so we reluctantly showed the little kitten the door and we each went on our separate way. A few hours later, we were in the apartment and noticed that the kitten had come back, so we let it back in for a while. We’d had the forethought of getting some very basic supplies while at the store – a couple of plastic salsa/guacamole bowls to serve as food and water dish, a disposable litter pan, a small bag of kitten food – just in case the kitten came back, so we kept her inside for a good while, and later that afternoon we opened the door and she zipped back outside. It had taken me about five minutes to get attached so I was very concerned that the poor thing would get hit by a car, or get lost, or worst of all picked up by someone else wanting a new pet, so I was pretty upset that the kitten had gotten outside again. Fast forward to the late evening, and I saw the kitten on the balcony yet again. I let it in and went to wake my wife – the cat came back! – and I was practically in tears I was so happy. I went right then and there to go get a cheap collar for the little thing, and after a trip to the vet to get it – her, we found out – checked for a chip and an extensive attempt to try and find where it came from we formally adopted Two Socks, and she’s been our cat ever since.

It was sometime during that first day that it was decided “if it comes back, we shall name it Two Socks,” just like in Dances With Wolves, one of my favorite movies. The cat is black except for her back feet, her chest and belly and chin, and a couple of patches between some of her front toes on both paws that are white. The name was kind of a no-brainer and it’s stuck. The picture above is the second photo we ever took of the cat. It has not been retouched in any way; that is precisely how the camera captured her.

It’s been a happy three years with Two Socks, and much more recently her new brother Stormy Cat. They bring such joy to our lives and my wife and I are both very happy that they picked us.

After tonight, I can never again say that I’ve never taken Zoloft.

My wife and I have a radio show tomorrow evening. We’re leaning towards a theme that we’re keeping secret for now, but it should be a good show that all will enjoy.

The apartment smells like bacon tonight. We cook two packs at a time in the oven and then refrigerate the cooked bacon to simply heat in the microwave in the mornings. It makes things so much easier and quicker for us than cooking as we go.

Today I braved a trip out of the house to go put gas in the car, pick up prescriptions from the pharmacy, and head to the store. I stayed in the car at the gas station, we went through the drive-through at the pharmacy, but I got out of the car and went into the grocery store, something that I generally try to avoid doing. Things got a little dicey at times in the store, but I made it through well enough. Yet another instance of getting out of my comfort zone and facing my anxieties.

Picked up another game on Steam today. It’s called Reigns and it’s a little indie decision making game. You’re the ruler of a kingdom and you are faced with a series of decisions that can either positively or negatively affect your church, your populace, your military, your treasury, or any combination of the four. Each either/or decision gives you a preview of what will be affected by that choice, and whether it will be a small or large effect – but it doesn’t tell you if it will be a positive or negative effect. Each decision represents one year in your reign. You start with the meters on all four areas partially full, and each level goes up and down according to your decisions, but if any of them completely empty, your reign is over and you die. It’s a challenging little game, and each game treats you as the successor monarch to the previous game, so the years pass by cumulatively from the starting point. Games last just a few minutes, the graphics are pretty primitive, and the game tracks things like how many of the different people you’ve met overall, how many of the different manners of death you’ve had, and a series of objectives and whether you’ve achieved them or not. The game was only a few dollars and it takes up next to no room on the hard drive, but it’s a fun little diversion and worth the money.

The knee that I injured during my trip to North Carolina last month is starting to bother me in a new way. After a few days, it would only bother me if I torqued my knee to either side – which it does while sitting in a car, most notably. I have to limp that off over a few minutes. Today it started hurting whenever I’d put weight on it – not badly, it felt more like localized pressure on my kneecap pushing it to the outside of my body – but noticeable, and it’s got me looking up orthopedists on my insurance plans for a call come Monday morning. I really don’t want to take a chance on having done some real damage to my knee.

NaBloPoMo Day 1: It’s National Blog Posting Month!


There’s a push among bloggers to spend November writing and posting one blog post a day for the month of November, as aspiring novel writers around the world congregate around their computers for National Novel Writing Month, or NaNoWriMo. This push among bloggers is called National Blog Posting Month, or NaBloPoMo.

Back in May in this blog, I made a commitment to participating in NaNoWriMo this year. Because my life has been extremely hectic and emotionally draining I haven’t prepared for this ponderous endeavor and thus will need to postpone my goal of writing a novel for at least one more year. As a consolation prize, however, I’m planning on tackling NaBloPoMo.

In today’s installment, I should likely catch you up on the past few weeks that I haven’t been writing. I ran out of the medication that I feel the effects of not having in my system the most, and almost immediately felt completely lethargic and unmotivated to do anything but the bare minimum of daily tasks. I let the checklists go for a week and a half, I spent a lot of time in bed, and I spent the majority of the time I was upright wondering why I wasn’t back in bed.

I did manage to accomplish something I’ve never done before. Logging my vitals is a measure of recording my weight and blood sugar in the morning, as well as my blood pressure and pulse three times daily, along with a notation of what time I took the reading. I’m mostly compliant with this but every few days it seems a reading falls through the cracks. The last reading I neglected to take was the afternoon of September 26th. I went a whole calendar month recording everything I was supposed to record, as well as taking every bit of medication I had at more or less the prescribed time. It’s a pretty big deal that when I felt the worst, I was still able to make sure I got the bare minimum of self-care done.

The long, drawn out saga of acquiring that one magic medication is over. I’m seeing the prescriber that originally started me on it and knows how to prescribe it to appease my insurance carrier. I have a four month supply on file with the pharmacy and a follow-up visit in January. Life is back to where it should be, medicinally speaking. (There’s been a change to another medication of mine that we’re still wrestling with the insurance company over, but hopefully that will be resolved without much falderal.)

I missed getting my checklists done but really didn’t feel up to it, emotionally or physically. Now that the missing medication is back on board, I’m feeling as back to normal as I can. I went out and socialized with several friends for lunch today and had a good time, though toward the end it started getting loud in the restaurant and I wanted to head out to keep from being overstimulated. I’d say that’s a good start to the month.

Finally, a Breakthrough


I have written many times in this blog about the ongoing struggle I’m having with finding a psychiatric medication manager. That struggle is almost over. I have checked with my former long-term med manager and she’s willing to see me at a reduced rate since I’d be paying out of pocket. While we work out the details of arranging a first visit, she even went so far as to call in the refills I need to my pharmacy, giving me a month of full psychiatric medication, none of which has changed since I last saw her. It’s the best outcome I can imagine, and in fact was better than I imagined, as I was surprised to find six prescriptions waiting for me at the pharmacy when I was expecting only three.

Today is day two of being almost fully medicated. (There was one of the meds that my wife called in for me that we didn’t pick up, for my back, due to being short funds for the week, not thinking it was doing a lot of good, and needing to pick up the ones that I’d been out of for so long. My back woke me up this morning and pointedly let me know otherwise. This morning was the first I’d spent on the heating pad in weeks, so I guess it was doing its job after all.) It’s a good time to really concentrate on getting back into my old positive habits, and I’m doing more or less decently on that. The last three days have been productive beyond my expectations and I’m very happy for that. I just need to keep on keeping on.

As far as the rest of my evening goes, I think I’ve earned the right to take it easy and chill out on the couch with either a game or a movie.

May 18, 2015: Three Good Things


1. Today is the first anniversary of the day that a little tuxedo kitten literally wandered in our door and stole our hearts. Two Socks owns the place now, and we, her dutiful staff, have showered lavish gifts upon her today, such as liberal time chasing the red dot, seafood gooshy food, and chopped up bits of cold boiled shrimp.

2. I took the next step in maintaining my psych medication regimen: I called for an intake appointment with the county mental health services (since I’m on Medicare, that’s where I was referred to). Still waiting on a call back, but I have the number of the person who made the referral and she asked me to call her back if I had problems, so come Wednesday if I haven’t heard anything I’m going to light a fire under someone’s butt.

3. We watched The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies for the first time. We liked it, but like many others, found it lacking somehow (having never read Tolkien, I’m unsure where it was lacking, but there was a distinct feeling that the ending raised more questions than it answered).