Turning a New Leaf, as They Begin to Fall

Well, this marks the end of week 2 at a new school.

I noticed yesterday at work, that I wasn’t struggling with my vertigo as I had in the past, during a task that I do infrequently. I am quietly hopeful that this marks a true end to this particular difficult journey. While it may not have been nearly as bad as it is for others, it really blew a hole in a lot of my self-perceptions and activities for over a year.

I’m not certain that the two are not related (school and vertigo). Among many ideas and recommendations was the concept that I must stay active, even if it’s at a reduced level.

The past several months at work, my personal schedule has been under heightened scrutiny: I ran out of sick and vacation time. Then again, I don’t earn much to begin with, because of my job classification: there is no prescribed minimum number of hours I must work each week. I’ve mostly taken advantage of this, making my schedule pretty much at-will for most of my time there, using up most of my paid time off, eating the “cost” of added hours of non-work. Then, there’s the year when THEY took advantage, and told me not to come back to work for nine months or so.

Since my return, I’ve been promised a change in position description and classification. That was four years ago. Two years ago, work began in earnest on the part of one of the higher-ups. Very slow progress has been made, which looks like no change at all from my point of view.

This added scrutiny feels like a punishment, because it seems like my position change will not be approved until I begin to work a minimum number of hours every week. That minimum fluctuated a little early on, then increased, and seems to be holding steady at 30 hours a week.

I’ve missed that goal a few times, but I’ve exceeded it, too. Most of it depends on how I’m feeling physically and mentally. I’m starting to feel needed again, so that helps.

But, at the end of another week, I was tired, managed to come in early anyway, and worked on a task that has been vertigo-causing in the past. Without feeling obvious vertigo.

Have I simply adjusted to it, now. I don’t think so.

But having school as an added distraction and required focus of mental faculties, on top of ramping up work efforts, may have played a big part.

The fact that school is, in fact, a Church program of transition for non-traditional students, also helps quite a bit. I’m praying more, studying scripture more than just reading it, feeling more spiritual promptings, and less resistant to following them. Heavenly Father helps those who help themselves, and who ask for help. He cannot help us if we do not ask Him to.

The program is VERY inexpensive, and an offer for a half-cost scholarship was forwarded to me from two different people. Money WAS tight, because this summer I still didn’t work for three straight weeks, despite the scrutiny. I applied for the scholarship, feeling that it wouldn’t hurt to ask, even if I feel my circumstances aren’t nearly as dire as they are for others. I got the scholarship! I was able to buy a notebook and some pens!

I am living proof that he CAN and WILL help when we ask. Even if we still feel we aren’t worthy, even when we’re still struggling with obedience and faith, He will help us.

I think it helps to be less specific about particular desires: ‘I want to keep this job I have right now,’ or ‘I want to be gainfully employed,’ as a random example. If we’re too specific, we may miss out on what He’s actually doing to help us improve ourselves and our circumstances. Understanding that He has VERY long-term plans for everything can help both with impatience and incorrect desires. On the other hand, being very specific might be just what’s needed: ‘Please help my knee to heal so I can walk without pain’ instead of ‘heal my body’ or ‘take away my pain.’ Perhaps that’s a bad example, as I look at what I’m typing. ‘Look after my family’ may be too vague; ‘help my cousin to overcome her grief’ might be just exactly the target He is looking for me to share with him.

On another hand, I think I stopped praying about my vertigo several weeks ago. And here I am today seemingly recovered.

I don’t want to celebrate too much, in case it comes back and I am bitterly disappointed.

But, I also noticed this week that I was in a better mood than I had been for some time. I was able to have a more positive outlook, and to simply be cheerful during given moments, instead of bitter and hopeless.

I still think that if I never get back to the level of activity I think I was at before all of this began, I still might be better off. I’m learning to be more disciplined with my time. I’m learning to schedule time out from the serious stuff, to try to achieve a balance so I don’t just break under pressure.

My faith is strengthened, my hope renewed, my body a little easier to navigate with.

Now, on to the upper gastrointestinal endoscopy next week! Then we’ll see whether there’s recent evidence of an ulcer or other damage. I’m hoping for a referral to a dietitian or something, anyway: when you aren’t eating well because you’re afraid of food hurting you, you probably don’t have the right amount of energy to think clearly about the food you need to eat.

I’m also looking forward to taking a truly earned “vacation day” and still meeting my 30-hour weekly quota! Isn’t that the true intent of paid time off? Okay, no, it’s not designed for medical procedures, specifically, but it sure helps pad things out when those things are necessary. And, I’m preserving my sick time, which I now understand should only be used when a short-notice absence is necessary, as in when one has a horrible cold that might be contagious.

It’s a strange thing to be optimistic about, isn’t it? I’m just excited, maybe, because it’s a benchmark for me: I’m using paid time off appropriately and have enough of that time saved up to be able to do it right. I’m “adulting,” as I understand the term. I don’t care what spellcheck seems to think that word should be instead of what I’ve typed.

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Patriarchal Blessing

This is a phenomenon that seems unique to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Maybe it isn’t. For me it was an absolutely new and foreign concept, four years ago. I received promptings fairly quickly that I should request mine. I had my interview and was granted permission. I felt awkward about it & didn’t follow up. Then, my Mother converted and was granted permission to receive her own Patriarchal Blessing. She was kind enough to invite me along. It was amazing. Powerful. Uplifting. A relief and a comfort. And I let it go. After promptings following the April Conference regarding my Father, I finally remembered I hadn’t followed up on those first, early promptings about this Patriarchal Blessing “Thing.”

Well, I did it. It was a moving and powerful experience. Then, it came in the mail, the other day. Perhaps some of the feelings are diminished, but not by much. I now understand why other Members urged me to pursue it, why they didn’t understand my fears.

I want to document that it has changed my life. It has given me purpose at a time when I was definitely foundering. It didn’t answer all of the questions I thought up beforehand. It answered questions I hadn’t asked in a very long time. It is a comfort. It is a foundation. It is HOPE.

I am more vividly reminded that This Life is NOT All There Is. But, what I do here and now does have eternal consequences.

Best of all? God can turn ANYTHING to His purposes of Good! And He fully intends to, and DOES, all the time for us! It’s a question of ALLOWING Him to work in our lives. It’s a question of turning away from the Enemy, and turning TO God.

This life is a Battle. One in a series of at least Two Great Battles. When we die, the War is not over! Based on our position upon departure, we may have more fighting to do. We may have risen above certain Influences, or not. But the Work is not done!

I am comforted to know that I have Begun the Work. Others who departed before me have reassured me that they are still There, and Happy. I SO appreciate that comfort!

Thank you, Heavenly Father, for your patience and perseverance.

Sunday

Sundays have changed for me, over the years. Today, I am moping about waiting for my Home Teachers to come in a little while.

The key is, it’s the Sabbath. Time spent only with God and Family, or In Service To Others. I spend it mostly at home, either before or after church, depending on what year it is. (This year, church starts at 9am. Last year, it started at 1pm.) I used to spend a lot of it on homework.

No homework, right now. And not for the foreseeable future. Doctor has told me NOT to go back to school until the Vertigo is resolved. *sigh* I was heartbroken in the moment, and for about a week afterwards. I’m starting to see it as an opportunity to get “caught up” at work. (That’s a total misnomer; I don’t think we’ve EVER been truly “caught up” since I started working there in early 2007!) I’m starting to see it as an opportunity to “do all those things I always want to do.”

Except, Vertigo. Now, I’ve always struggled to work a 40-hour workweek. But 30 hours has begun to look impossible, especially in the face of “oh, we can get by fine on 20-25 hours of work per week.”

As long as Pete stays at his job, we’re probably fine. And, since every year there is some sort of raise, we’re doing increasingly fine. Heck, I got a raise, last year! It was, of course, mostly a directive sort of raise, not entirely a “merit-based” raise, but SOME of that somewhere IS merit-based! WOW!

Maybe it’s the Vertigo, maybe I’m growing up; I just don’t enjoy shopping the way I used to. I don’t look forward to trips out after arriving home from work. The other day I realized, I didn’t even want to get on my computer after getting home from work. I don’t enjoy spontaneity the way I used to. Now part of that is ABSOLUTELY a “side-effect” of treating my ADHD (discovered FOR THE FIRST TIME when I was 36, in 2012!). Part of that is ABSOLUTELY I am satisfied with my home & life: I don’t go looking for stimulation wherever I can find it.

Okay, this is totally random thoughts, stream-of-consciousness stuff. I’m also drowsy/sleepy/tired today. Perhaps this post is an exercise in staying awake “five more minutes” so I’m not asleep when the gentlemen arrive shortly. It is where I am. I don’t journal or blog, much. I’m more of a FaceBook Sharer, a Like-er. Well, there I are.

Another Dizzy Day

So, been struggling with nearly overwhelming dizziness more often than not, of late. Started with a bad cold/sinus infection in April, iirc.

Getting a scan tomorrow. Not certain whether it’s a C/T or a CAT. Talked w/Pete about it of course; we have no clue what either is, or whether they’re different. Another fun adventure into medical technology!

Missed a deadline for an English assignment, yesterday. 😦 But, late only means a few lost points, NOT a zero, so I’ll try later today. NOT looking forward to it: the content is supposed to be about Human Trafficking. Yuck. Maybe that’s why I haven’t dived in? Is that a word; dived? But “dove” sounded wrong, too.

Good friend w/tons of problems had another doozy, yesterday: power got shut off. Due to long-standing dispute over charges incurred by a relative. There had been paperwork submitted by a Dr. in May, but Excel apparently LOST that form. After telling her over the phone in MAY that they’d received it! >.< How much harder does that family’s life have to get???

Mum sent me an email a couple weeks ago about “Anniversary.” Sept 11th, iirc, was our trip to the Temple, last year. I’m not proud to say I haven’t been back since. So, I struggle with “fewer blessings” of late because of my lack of follow-up, I suppose. Not punishment! Just, a lack of return on lack of investment: you can’t earn interest if you don’t put it in the bank to begin with.

Ah, Statistics. First Exam tonight. Not looking forward to it. Who publishes a textbook w/o a Glossary?! Apparently, many! Grrr… Spent a bit on another Stat book at work, yesterday; one that HAD a glossary. Might photocopy that just to make it easier. Started to compile a list of terms from my own Stat book for the class. It’s going to be long. This is why I didn’t actually undertake this idea for Gov’t Accounting in the spring. But I think occasionally about it that I should do that one too anyway.

The summer went by fairly unproductive. Glad I took it off from school, but I’m still really slacking to get back in to the “swing of things” with homework & such. Bad Quiz score for Stats the other day. 😦 But Eng 122 so far is 100%. I wasn’t really worried about much except the word count lmits. How does one write a 2 paragraph PAPER about 2 different aspects of plagiarism, that can’t exceed 300 words?! Apparently, very carefully. But the grade must came in: 100% ! Woohoo!

Yuck, dizzy. Okay, I ate like crap yesterday: tiny bit of yogurt for breakfast, “celebration” Panda Express for lunch; Anna left us at work. 😦 Rushed through linguine for dinner to go to Ace & get lamp oil & King Soopers for ice for my friend w/o power for the night. Grrrrr… So, gamed for the rest of the evening. Read very late. To bed @ 3am. My hours are definitely turning for the worse. But all that added up to very dizzy me staying home today.

Scan tomorrow to find “root cause,” which may simply be “chronic sinus infection.” Scan first; then extended antibiotics, then another scan a month after that course is finished. See if there’s a change, move on to MRI for brain after that. Whee!

Anger or forgiveness

As the years go by, I find I am less angry and sometimes more curious. NOT that I ever want to see that person again. I just wonder if the motivations were what I think they were. I always try to believe there is some good in every person. And I suppose in your case maybe there was. A little tiny bit. That was buried very deeply.

Do you feel sorry, now?

Do I care if you’re sorry?

I know I need to forgive. I’m mostly there, I think.