Wow, so, these last few weeks, or months, or whathaveya, have been weird. Not frantic, exactly, but hectic, and it's all run together. I haven't been able to center my thoughts long enough to write or think or even coherently speak about all of it. Work's a mess, like it usually is. Inspections, training, PT, long hours, short hours that unexpectedly turn long, four-section duty, the usual kitty-cat dance. Could be worse, but it could also be a hell of a lot better.

On the personal front, I'm starting to get some of my issues sorted out. Insomnia has suddenly and unexpectedly become a pain in my arse. I have no idea why. This has never been an issue before, and it sucks. Beyond that, though, I'm finally talking to a psychiatrist, trying to get my issues with ADHD and AS and depression/dysthymia under control - haven't touched the gender stuff yet, not sure I will as long as I'm dealing with a military doctor. So, they've got me on methylphenidate 20mg BID, which works for focus problems. It worked before, so this doesn't surprise me - but it doesn't really mitigate my tendency to withdraw behind my AT field, and doesn't do much about the lingering sense of worthlessness that I just can't quite talk myself out of. I go back in a few weeks, doc says he'll be looking at adding piracetam or bupropion in addition to (at first) or perhaps instead of the Ritalin. Of course there'll be therapy/counseling along with that. Hopefully between the two, I can get myself unstuck and out of this rut. It's not debilitating, precisely, but I feel, well, underclocked, I guess. Or like I'm swapping. Just plain not at full speed.

On top of that, I'm finally getting to the bottom of what's wrong with my knees and other joints. I've begun to suspect that it might be Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, Type 3 (AKA Joint Hypermobility Syndrome), and the doctor tentatively agrees, so, there will be more investigation to follow on that one. I hope I'm wrong - from all I've read EDS is a first-class pain in the arse - but if it's not that, maybe I'll at least find out what it is. Twelve years it's been bothering me, and there have been little signs, like my knees doing something odd when I squat down, for longer than that. (Odd how, I'm not sure - it feels like the joint is becoming misaligned (subluxated, maybe?), but it clears up quickly once I force my knee back straight again. This is baffling to me.)

But anyway, back to work. We shall see what comes of all this. Yay.

Something interesting happened today while I was at the job placement agency. I was sitting across from the desk of a representative, filling out some paperwork and a young man came in. He sat in the chair across from me so that our backs were facing each other, black padded chair backs providing a thin barrier of privacy. I could not help but overhear his conversation. He was a recent graduate of the same university that I graduated from two years ago. He wanted to get a job in administration, and his representative was explaining to him that he had no experience. It would be extremely difficult for them to find him anything, and he may not be able to find what he was looking for through their agency. It was a brutal truth, and I shielded my ears to the young man's reply. My own representative was asking me questions again. By the time I left the agency, that young man was no longer there, so I'm assuming he left to find help elsewhere.

It was interesting to me because two years ago the exact same thing happened to me. I finished school and went to a job agency downtown, hopeful that they would find me something. I expected an assignment to be handed to me right away. I thought that because I was smart and educated, and had held steady jobs ever since age 16, that was enough to set me apart from other people. It was enough to qualify me for almost anything, so long as it wasn't a highly specialized job. Those were the thoughts of a naive person. My god, I felt old today as I watched a younger version of myself experience the same realization about how difficult the working world really is.

The reason I went to the agency was to find work in a warehouse environment. It is what I've been doing part-time to support my educational pursuits, therefore that is the kind of work that I am going to get most easily. I'm trying to break into a new field of study after finishing a college program earlier this year. It's not easy, and I'm not having any luck, at least not yet. So here I am going after the same sort of job that I have been doing since before I finished school, even though the point of school was to not have to do this type of work anymore. It's sort of depressing. I feel as though every damn log I write is depressing lately, but this is where I am right now.

Believe it or not, every other thing in my life is actually going really well. I feel better about myself than I have in a very long time. I work on my gardening, and invent new recipes to cook up in the kitchen, and lately my SO and I have become more involved in the community. So far, we have attended a poetry slam competition, an animation festival, and tonight we attended our local independent writer's organization. I used to be too obsessed with studying and working and saving money to do any of those things. I used to sit at home and watch TV instead of "wasting" my money on local entertainment. I was saving my life for after I graduated and got a career. Well, not anymore. There is more to life than having the best job ever and making lots of money, though I'll admit I still want those things too. Life is really fucking hard but it's going to get better, and
there are plenty of things to make life liveable
even when things aren't going my way.

It only took me two years to figure this out. That's less than half the amount of time that I have spent in college/university. I guess experience is still the best teacher after all.

Today I will climb onto a bus to take part in The Daily Show's March for Sanity. At first I thought I wouldn't attend, I liked the idea but Washington is about a seven hour drive from my home, and frankly that's a long drive for three hours. But the more I thought about it the more it ate at me. I despise today's politics, where reality is defined ideologically, where smearing people and just plain making stuff up is just normal. I'm glad I don't watch much TV because all the dishonest negative ads nauseate me.

In short, I think my country's about to take a deep dive into the toilet and I damned well don't like it. So even though I'm a guy who cares deeply but is really reluctant to pick up a sign, I think I'll make an exception this time, as I did back in 2003. If America is to move forward, and even act as a responsible partner in the world, our political debate must center on the real world, and invective must not substitute for evidence. So I'm going. And I hope I meet a couple noders there.

Author's Note: In retrospect, the warning signs of self-abuse and work immersion were visible, but being ignored. There's something comforting about tunnel vision. Looking back now, I can see that I was killing myself. I don't think I ever believed, somehow, that I was going to make it out of Virginia.

15mg melatonin/1.2g piracetam

I've gone back over to night shift, and the single most noticeable thing about this is that I feel sick and old all over again. It's a high-contrast sort of sick. I'm sleeping through the day and waking up at night foggy-headed and full of malaise; I'm wandering through work and despising it. Personal issues have kicked in - again. Something minor has managed to burn into something, gestalt combining, hints and therapy combining into a comprehension that's left me raw and not a little bit broken.

And I can't talk about it, can barely think about it. I'm huddling inside of myself a bit, licking my wounds - there's this vicious cycle that's been ongoing for four or five years now. My sudden understanding of where it's come from and what it means hasn't softened things at all. Part of my inspiration, part of where I've drawn my strength from, has become a liability. And I can't get any more bald or detailed than that.


It's all in abstract. Work is a set of abstracts, variables. Sleep is a set of abstracts. Electronica is forming the backbeat, the theme, the purgative, the recreation of myself as something separate from the element. Tarot has become an abstract, and a blueprint. Server details, filesystems, rows of racks full of identical servers. Windowless buildings. Natasha accelerating, shifting under my hand from fourth to fifth gear.

Tired, raw, roaring, howling, a thundering backbeat: everything EVERYTHING everything everything has become the nature of my heart breaking. Again. As it has, over and over, for the past four or five years. Underneath it all, there's a roiling, tired resentment against myself, against the offender, and a cold disgust.

Meanwhile, it's all "live through this, and you won't look back" which I'm aspiring to. It's time to get to the point where I just don't care.

And there's a whole lot of disgusted self-pity and self-loathing in between point A and point B.

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