Wednesday, January 9, 2013

#ROW80 1st QTR 2013 POST 1 - GOALS REDUX

I wasn’t entirely sure there was going to be a post today. Y’see I went and broke my blog yesterday. I started monkeying around with the widths. In Blogger in the “Live Blogger” settings, whatever those are, once you do that, you’re toast. At one point, instead of 2 columns, I had 3 columns and the center column was so skinny, that the rows had only one letter per row. Boy, did that suck. Legally blind, confuse-a-what, purple and black background swirls. All of the Orienteering in ROTC in High School couldn’t have found their way out of that. So, I did what any good computer science tecchy person does. I hid it for a while until I could figure it out. Actually, this just required some patience, which I have barrels of. I have a seriously sucky-looking blog, but we’ve grown together, so it’s cool. It at least works.

Can you find the title and have I become my own meme?

Today being the very, very first day of #ROW80 1st Qtr 2013, post 1, I am going to announce my intended goals. Working within my own limitations, which I have kind of, sort of come to some hand-shake truce with. Not because of any real support from my own doctors and not to slam them, but through the wonderful support and optimism from folks and groups, like YumaBev, Jim Adams, Penny Adams, CyndeeBowen, Sherry @inspireme39, P.A.N.D.A., and National Parkinson’s Foundation. Without their wonderful presence, this would either be a different post, or non-existent.

My goals are this; I have enough material to self-publish an e-book. In five sections, early life, my study and career in music, how I ended up in computers and my career at IBM and Verizon, how I became homeless and the aftermath and my present life. I had started to try and put this all together during NaNo, but 2 things interfered.

Thing number one was a disastrous clash with some “neurologists” during a two hour appointment, which was an exercise in botched communication, frustration and humiliation, because I appeared to not “understand” what a very heavily-accented Chinese intern was directing me to perform. The attending physician, rather than greeting me upon entering the patient suite like a normal person, BARKED “why are you here?” Not convinced I wasn’t “faking," or it wasn't my bipolar symptoms I was sent away in shame. I also have Asperger; they didn't listen to me tell them that my bipolar diagnosis was in March after a psychotic break; my more severe onset of PD symptoms was in June and again, in October of last year. They were completely deaf to that. 

Convinced I was not wrong, but frustrated led to an almost-melt-down on my part that following weekend. My meltdowns are pretty spectacular. Luckily, I have a good support system; the Tampa Police Department are kind; the Tampa General Hospital ER docs rock. The attending in the ER couldn’t understand my agitation. Until we both agreed that we would agree on what we both were saying; I had an appointment the following Tuesday that had been set up in advance with my primary care doctor.

This was the previous Sunday. He couldn’t figure out why I was there. Piece by piece, I was able to tell him. He carefully noted it in my chart, as we agreed on each point. By this time, I had the worst headache of my life. This happens when I become so severely frustrated. With the tremors and the other pain from the “Parkinson’s Disease, or not-Parkinson’s Disease, that is the question,” I begin to stutter and have trouble talking. He was able to get me calmed down enough and give me an IV for the headache. I went home that night. JC was frantic.

My primary care doctor was understandably pissed, but not at me. I am on a regimen of vitamins, cinnamon, and eating. I’ve felt remarkably good, but trying to write got to be too hard and I was hating it, so I stopped shortly after that episode. I’ve had one other visit from my municipal support friends in the form of Tampa Fire Rescue. I had a little shock when my good friend decided my ex who put me in the hospital (it’s complicated) could come and stay with her.

Bam! The worst chest pains imaginable! Radiating through the center, around my back and shoulders, cold sweat, everything. I was eating scrambled eggs at the time I was talking to her. Quick! Call 911! RRRRRRRR! Blood pressure, all the whole megilla. They got nothing; I’m A-OK. JC had put an aspirin under my tongue. The eye-candy guy (and why do all the fire-guys look like a hunka hunka burnin’ love?) who had driven the red ambulance looks at my meds.

“Did you take your Xanax?” Me, sheepish. “nurm.” He says, “What? Why not?” “It makes me drowsy.” He just grins. “Ma’am, Mary, you’re supposed to take your meds and stuff.” Busted. “I’m feeling better,” I protest. “Take your pill.” Busted

So enough of that, I’ve been eating and also getting some exercise. Back to why NaNo was a bust. Two, was that I had not one clue about how to pull together any kind of novel or lengthy work. I had this idiotic idea that I should start at the beginning, but after listening to writers and authors discuss strategy, I hear myriad ways to bring their work to print. The real starting point for my story is somewhere closer to what I am assuming is the end of my life; when I was dumped off at the homeless shelter. It’s a terrific place to begin and would hook any reader. Any thoughts on that?
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