ue I'm More Than Just a Mom...I Think: October 2006u

Thursday, October 12, 2006

A Year Ago....

Depression is a shitty thing. Let's not mince words and soften it up. It's hell on earth. I've gone my entire life without having a deal with it. It was always one of those "happens to other people" things. Never thought it would happen to me because, well, I was 33 years old and it had never affected me before - why now? But, it did. It was one of the worst times of my life.

So I sit here now, alone, at midnight, with the tv on, and I'm thinking how lucky I am to not feel that way anymore. To be happy. Appreciative of my life and everything I have. I won't pretend that life's been all roses and rainbows, but my life has definitely been easier than a lot of people. I'm extremely lucky to have been adopted by such a great family and raised well. I have compassion, love, and a fierce thirst for knowledge and growth. I have a wonderful husband, 3 fantastic kids - we live in a great house right near my parents (who leave us alone haha). Since I've been in my 30s, my life has been, alternately, the best it's ever been and the worst. I had two major life changes, one the greatest day of my life, and 6 months of the darkest days I've ever had. I actually lost 2 months of my life, from October to December of 2003 - I have rare memories of those months and the only ones I have are bad - I can't name a good or happy memory from that time. But, that's another story for another time and probably won't be discussed publically anyway.

A year ago, I was a mess. Just so sad all the time. Why did it hit me then? There are some theories but at this point, does it really matter? I was fixed by the magic of anti-depressants. I tried to go off the meds a few months ago. I succeeded after a hellish withdrawal (which I think I wrote about, but I don't feel like going back to see if I did or not), only to find that the tenseness and anxiety were coming back. I knew enough to recognize that's the beginning of depression for me. I start to feel trapped, like I need to run away - everything makes me snap, angry, nothing rolls off my back. Used to be like water off a duck, only to turn into a sponge. I saw a new doctor and got on a new medication - one that didn't scare me so much and didn't have such awful physical withdrawal symptoms.

It's finally starting to work - quack, quack, I'm my lovely old ducky self. Work is much less stressful - I'm less tense and best of all, I enjoy being around my children more.

I used to feel broken. I used to feel like something was wrong with me that I needed medication to make myself the same as I was a few years ago. Now, I feel like I finally understand it - I'm not broken. Why suffer if I don't have to? To be some kind of super-woman? Bullshit.

Of course, crazy is still part of me. I'm tearing up writing this, not out of sadness, but out of happiness - I don't need to feel that way anymore and I'm so thankful that I don't.

I'm a lucky, lucky person and I know this. I'm thankful for it every day.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Penn & Teller

I've always really enjoyed magic. I love trying to figure out how tricks are done and I wonder sometimes how long they must practice to get certain tricks right.

As soon as we landed in Vegas, I started seeing billboards for Penn & Teller's live show. WHAT? P&T have a live show every night in Vegas? NO WAY! So, of course, I got tickets.

We got to our seats (3rd row center, incidentally!!!!) and set up on the stage were two items. A large wooden crate and an easel with a big yellow piece of paper on it and the date. To the right of the stage was a bald piano player with some tattoos across the back of his neck. Between each song, he would say something to the effect of "ok, now it's time to come up on the stage, sign the paper, and look at a box". He made whitty quips about how exciting it was to sign a piece of paper and look at a box. Quite entertaining - not to mention the music was great.

The show started right on time - Penn came out and all of a sudden, Teller popped out of the crate that was on the stage!! How cool!!! They started out with the infamous "balls and cups" trick, which is still impressive. Even more impressive? They did it again immediately after with clear cups and showed us how they did everything!! That's one thing I love about Penn & Teller - they always let you know they are full of shit and everything is a trick.

I laughed throughout the entire show and marvelled at the tricks. Some were explained, others weren't. Even with how close we were, I couldn't catch the slight of hand or anything. Very impressive.

After the show, we were exiting the theater and saw a small crowd to our left. There was Teller, signing autographs, taking pictures and TALKING with everyone. So strange to hear him speak. I tried to take a picture of my friend with him, but the camera wasn't working right. Further up, there was a crowd on the right around Penn!! I was SO excited!!!! I listen to Penn's radio show a lot and I think he's fiercely intelligent and I really respect him a lot. So, we waited around for a few minutes until it was our turn. He was really gracious and seemed genuinely pleased to be meeting his fans.

That was absolutely the highlight of my trip. Oh, and here's the picture :)

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Monday, October 09, 2006

Wonders of the Modern World

As I type this blog entry, I'm slouched on a chair in the waiting area of Gate B-22 at the McClarren Airport in Las Vegas (at least I think that's the name of it). The kind people who run this establishment are wonderful enough to provide a free wireless connection in the airport. I'll probably be here a good 90 minutes before we board the plane and this one little thing, this wireless connection, is keeping me both awake and entertained.

I giggle a little to myself as I'm looking across at the 3 men who are asleep on the bench across from me. They are probably in their late 20s and they look spent. One of them is about to fall over on the other and I'm waiting for the guy's reaction to that. Oh wait - they all just popped up awake. Oh, one's down again. Two of them have hats pulled down over their faces. One has something in his mouth and I'm waiting for it to fall out.

It's amazing to me sometimes how different life is just a few years after the last time I flew. Years ago, you had to load up a carry-on bag with all sorts of books, puzzles, and things to keep you entertained on the plane, especially if it was a long flight. If you were lucky, the flight MIGHT have a movie. A bad one, with a teeny-tiny screen at the front of the airplane. That was if you were lucky. On my flight out to Vegas, the airplane was equipped with Direct-TV programming as well as a choice of 3 movies, which are not in theaters and not yet out on DVD. All this video entertainment is shown on a screen on the back of the seat in front of you. Fantastic. I barely had to take anything out of my bag to entertain myself (though, I must say, Nacho Libre has much to be desired and I was disappointed).

I'm trying so hard to stay awake, since my flight is a red-eye and I'd love to just sleep the entire 4.5 hours home. This wireless connection, which I'm sure wasn't available in the last couple of years, is really helping me. I'm listening to some tunes, blogging, chatting to my friends who are retarded enough to still be awake this late on the Sunday night.

I really do love the modern age.

Oh, and the Three Amigos are all still sleeping. I suppose I'll be a good citizen and wake them, should they still be passed out when the plane starts boarding.

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Greetings From Vegas!!!

First, I have to say, yes, I'm awake at 5am PST. It's 8am to me, ok? Luckily, my friends are awake, too. We're gonna go get some Starbucks soon.

My flight from BWI to Denver was very smooth. As I walked off the plane, I immediately found Beth and shortly afterwards, we got on the plane to Vegas. That flight was short (thank god). Her friend Ginny was waiting for us at our gate, we went to get the luggage and off to the hotel we went.

We got checked in, hung out in the room for a while (totally overpriced, but hey, this is Vegas) and then walked down the strip, looking for food. We ended up at Outback, an old favorite and had a long lunch.

Back to the hotel and the gambling commenced. I can DEFINITELY see why people lose all their money in Vegas. So many games, so much fun!!!! I, however, am up $100. Yay me!!!! I have money set aside for gambling and I'm determined to stick with that. I do have a little extra in cash that I'm using as "found" money.

I see that Penn & Teller are playing here. We're going to try to get tickets to that for tonight, that would be AWESOME!!! I think we'll do some shopping today and we're definitely gonna get some sushi.

I can't express how relaxed and unstressed I am right now. We're having a great time and really enjoying not having anyone else to worry about except ourselves. Everyone should do this once in a while!

I want to ride some of the thrill rides here. Part of me is torn though. I think David would love Vegas and maybe I'll save that kinda stuff for when we're here together.

Ok - need coffee. I'm not sure if I'll report back in from here or not - the wireless connection is $15 a day and honestly, that's money that I could be gambling.
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