One Year.

personal

One year ago today, I almost died. I had a big, fancy post all ready to share, complete with pictures, but I accidentaly deleted it through a series of unfortunate events.

Whatever. I’ll take that as the universe saying I don’t need to bore anyone by talking about the crap I went through. It wasn’t pretty, it was downright disgusting, and I survived. I will point out that the problem I lived with for six years is easily fixed by surgery, but I’m one of those people that falls in the “hole” in Obamacare. I make too much money to get a really good subsidy, not enough to afford a three to four hundred dollar a month payment on an insurance plan with a ridiculously high deductible. ($7500-8000, if you’re curious.) So I couldn’t afford the surgery.

Instead, I’ll bore you with something else. Normal people that have near-death experiences report things like bright lights, tunnels, beloved presences, encounters with divinity. I didn’t get any of that. Although I’ll admit I got ferociously dizzy, my vision got dim, and my brain got really stupid.

What did happen is I got pissed off. And I mean really, truly, deeply pissed off. This happened right about the time I saw the emergency room staff moving quickly, and multiply from one to about half a dozen, and it sunk in that they thought I was actually dying right there in front of them.

Weird feeling, by the way.

And while the ER staff was moving quickly, at a speed you never want to see in real life, I was feeling apologetic for troubling them when I didn’t feel half as shitty as I did back in January.

That was when I got pissed.

There I was, literally dying, and I’d been working. Just like always. That’s most of what I do with my life, after all. Work, work, work. And I felt significantly better that day than I did back in January. I was able to take a couple days off back then, but my boss insisted I had to come in to groom some regular customers that no one else could do, so I tried. Even though I knew I wasn’t safe to drive, I drove. And I worked. And I groomed two dogs.

But then I called my boss and told her I don’t care how bad she needs me working, I can’t do this and have to go home. Now, after the fact, I know why I was so dizzy I couldn’t stand or even see straight. The doctors called it acute anemia, said that I could have died.

And a couple weeks later, I was working with blood clots in my leg and my lungs, and more acute anemia. It was so bad I could feel my heart beating super-fast and erratic. I had to keep taking breaks to let the poor thing calm down before it actually exploded. When I finally got to the doctor, she said I could drop dead at any moment.

And I kept working, and working, and working.

Have you figured out why I got pissed yet? It’s because somewhere along the line, I kind of forgot that I swore I’d never work myself to death like my dad did. So I almost dropped dead, more times than I’ve mentioned here, at work. Doing exactly what I swore not to do.

At least I had the brains to call for help before my heart stopped because there wasn’t any blood left to pump. The doctor at the hospital told me I was almost there. The blood count I had was 5, she said hearts stop at around 4-4.5.

Screw that whole working myself to death thing. I’m pissed, and staying pissed, and using that anger and frustration to get my life sorted out so I can drop back to a more normal amount of work. It’ll take a couple years to clean up my situation so I can afford to stop this 50-60+ hour a week bullshit, but I’m going to do it. I will arrange my life so I can work a normal job, have a home of my own instead of a rental, and spend more time living. I am going to do things I enjoy, including getting out on the weekends to go hiking or find a horse to ride or whatever. I’ve done that a few times already, and it’s a vast improvement over working.

In short, I’m going to take the second chance I was given, and do something a hell of a lot better than work.

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Finally!

personal, Random

Something awesome finally happened last night. Ever since I had surgery a year ago, I’ve been trying to get back into bellydance. And… my body’s been stubbornly refusing to cooperate.

But last night, I was in the middle of thinking the usual this sucks, why even bother, I can’t dance, and suddenly my body said oh yeah! I know how to do this!

And I became a bellydancer again.

*does happy dance*

(I know. The picture has nothing to do with dancing. But the silly things make me happy.)

I confess…

personal
I have a confession to make. My conscience demands it.
Every weekend I try to do some extra cleaning. You know the kind, where you really, really clean something on a semi-regular basis in an effort to keep on top of it. Well, last week I did the kitchen, which was disgusting because I figured out I can’t even remember the last time I did it. (Valid excuse: I was sick as hell. When I finally felt strong enough to do something about it, the holidays attacked. I did it as soon as I could!)
Fine. So my kitchen’s clean now. The guilt from leaving it gross for so long doesn’t even begin to compare to what happened today, though.
I intended to do the bathroom. It’s gotten more attention than the kitchen, because it’s smaller and bathrooms get really nasty if you don’t clean ’em. But it wound up being the plants.
I started watering my plants this morning, only to discover that one of them had been knocked clean out of the window and turned upside down, coming to rest on top of the radiator, poor thing. (Wondering how that happened? I have a kitten.)
So I fished it out, set it up with some more dirt, and… I kept hearing these sad little plant-voices.
Stupid human, they were saying. She promised us a good home, they whispered, while I looked around for the source. She even said she’d give us a new pot last week!
And then I realized what happened.
A couple weeks ago, almost three actually, I ran across a bunch of herbs for sale pretty cheap. So I picked some up. Rosemary, thyme, and basil, to replace the rosemary and basil I accidentally murdered by leaving them outside on a night that was way too cold for them. I brought them home, promising them a nice new pot and regular water. You know, the good life for a plant.
But what really happened was I set the poor little buggers down with the other plants, forgot to repot them last weekend, forgot they even existed. I barely remembered to water anyone last week, because it was so busy at work.
And now here they were, all sad and dried out, but still hanging on to life. I immediately found them a new pot, got them into it, gave the poor things water and access to the grow-light. They’re now sitting beside me, all sorts of happy, standing up and singing a little growgrowgrow song. Whew! Plant crisis averted.
And now, conscience clean, I can go on about the weekend. In other words, back to editing The Apex Mage.

Ramblings about 3D stuff

3D, personal

I upgraded my computer recently. Yes, I know, I’ve told everybody in this world and three others about my new computer. That’s because I love it, and I’m proud as hell that I assembled the big beast without messing anything up. But I stuck my old drives in the new case, because there wasn’t anything wrong with them. And… about three weeks later, one of the big old monsters started groaning and complaining, acting like it was way too old to get up in the morning, and saying it wasn’t going to last much longer.

So I got a new drive. Took a chance this time on something new, which I usually don’t. I tend to wait for a new technology to be out in the world for a while before trying it, because it seems like tech companies are in such a rush to get something out there that they don’t neccessarily work out all the bugs first. But what the hell, life’s short. The drive I got is a hybrid between a normal drive and an SSD, called the Seagate Firecuda. And let me tell you, that thing is fast! I don’t regret trying something new this time, that’s for sure.

Which brings my rambling ass back around to the 3D stuff. Imagine that.

When I moved into the new system, it screwed up all my carefully sorted and organized 3D content. My categories didn’t work anymore, what with the new OS and the new SSD holding the new OS and having to re-install all my programs to work with the new OS and… You get the picture. I’d just barely begun getting the mountains of stuff organized when I had to put the new drive in, and move all my content. Again. Breaking all my categories. Again.

“Bugger” was the least of what I said, but I got everything onto the new drive.

I bought a product ages ago when it was on sale for about three bucks called Content Cataloger Easy. I wasn’t initially too impressed with it, because all it does is round up every thumbnail in the content directories and display each and every one of them. It makes a huge batch of images, stretching across many pages, without an easy way to navigate through the things. But I gave it another try out of sheer desperation. Yes, the thing is still a pain, with the endless scrolling through mountains of crap. But it’s also really nice, because it lays out pictures of everything, complete with the path to the whatever. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve run across something I forgot I had, or I forgot just how cool it was.

Which brings me to my other problem. Please, people, don’t let me buy any more content! Holy crap, I’ve got enough stuff cluttering up my hard drive to last three lifetimes! If you catch me hinting that I’m looking for more, then please kick me right in the butt. Hard. Because I’ve got plenty.

I blame Daz for that. 😉 They’re the ones that have had some amazing sales right when I’ve had some bucks to spend. And it’s also my boss’s fault, too, because she gave me a nice shiny bonus check that coincided with one of those good sales.

And now, having sufficiently bored people with my randomness, I’m going to get back to sorting my big pile of stuff. Let the agony of sorting be a lesson to me for the future, one all about exercising self-control and using the bonus check for real world things like food, or clothes, or even vehicle repairs.

A Random Memory

personal, Random

In case you don’t know this already, I love to bellydance. I’m out of practice now, because of that whole sick thing, but I’ll get back to it soon. Work’s far too crazy right now to allow much of anything.

Anyway, I was thinking today about my last public performance. I was up on stage, dancing with my veil. People were okay with it, but not going crazy or anything. The music changed, I let the second veil come out, the crowd went bonkers. Everyone loves double veil, after all.

And then…

One of my veils cut loose and fluttered down to the ground.

Super embarrassing! There I was, spinning like a crazy thing, wearing my “I’m performing” smile, with only one veil. Crappy. But I traveled towards it over three spins, then spun low and grabbed the sneaky bastard and got it going again. Decent enough recovery, but man, it sucked.

And you know what? Despite the embarrassment, I still love to dance. Maybe I’ll get back to performing again, maybe not, but either way I’m going to break those veils out again and let them fly.

When Disasters Attack

personal

This year has been a rough one for me and my family. Anyone who knows me knows I almost dropped dead several times in the last year. Well, I just found out my brother was in a horrible car crash last month and could have died very easily. He’s still alive, and one hundred percent as cantankerous as ever. Which means that my sister-in-law set up a GoFundMe account for him, but didn’t tell him, because he’d find a way to get up and kick her ass over asking for charity.

But dang it, everybody needs a bit of help sometimes, and being almost dead and unable to work certainly qualifies as a time to ask for help. My sister-in-law asked me to share this if I could. I had to think about it a bit, because if I post it to Facebook, well, my brother will see it and probably get ultra pissed.

So I’m posting here.

If there are any people out there who read this and also happen to be one of the super-nice people who occasionally donate some bucks to strangers in need, check out this GoFundMe. I know you awesome people exist, because I hear about you frequently from others talking about how some random stranger donates to a GoFundMe. Heck, when I was recovering from my surgery, I even got a couple people tossing a few bucks my way that I’ve never heard of.

So here you go. The picture of the smashed-up car is what they got my brother out of, and onto a helicopter in time to survive. (Um… edit. She changed the picture. It shows my brother and his wife now.)

https://www.gofundme.com/7f8smw-randy039s-recovery

And by the way, just to be clear, I don’t expect any random miraculous donations. I’m just sending this out to the world because there’s a slim chance, and because I am absolutely certain my brother doesn’t read my blog and therefore won’t cuss me out. Which he most assuredly would if he knew about this, know what I mean? So please don’t think I expect anyone who sees this to dig out bucks to support a total stranger.