After what seemed like two weeks of hell on earth, I am feeling quite a bit better. It was a combo platter of too much stress (external and internal), PMS, varying levels of anxiety and a dip into the old vat of depression. As soon as Flo came to town—Alabama guy too—I began feeling leaps and bounds better.
This weekend, Birmingham came to Memphis from Friday night to early this morning. I was a little bummed when I heard the Sunday departure would have to be at 7 a.m., but I managed to get past it, especially when Saturday was such a good day. I fed him leftovers on Friday night, phase two in my “best meal ever” (though definitely not as good reheated): baked bbq/garlic chicken thighs; skillet o’ potatoes, asparagus tips, mushrooms & onions; hickory baked beans with bacon. My landlady was so kind about having him come visit—it makes me feel so guilty for how hard I am to get along with on a daily basis. I’m never openly rude or horrible, but I’m unresponsive and weird. Anyway, it was nice to have him here and have it be a comfortable, not-awkward situation.
We didn’t get out and about till midday Saturday, but it was worth it to lounge around in the morning together. We had lunch at a sandwich shop, where I may or may not have picked up a random duck-hunting stalker by asking him where he got the duck ringtone on his cell. I thought, I’d like to get one of those for my phone; I’ll avoid being a wuss and ask where he got his. Well, that turned into his calling his daughter to find out where she downloaded it, not getting a hold of her and then asking for my number so he could let me know when he found out. My hope is that he’ll be another well-meaning forgetful person who never remembers to ask about it or call me back. I’d be OK with that. Of course, boyfriend was jokingly aghast at the idea that I’d given my number to another man while he was sitting nearby. I am such a dork. =P
Anyway, I took him on a rainy walk at DU in the hopes of identifying a group of ducks that were definitely not mallards. Unfortunately, we couldn’t get close enough, then ended up getting hit with some sleet when almost back to my car. Needless to say, the remainder of the daytime hours were spent drying off on a driving tour of the city.
I wasn’t sure how skilled a Memphis tour guide I could be since I’ve seen very little of the city myself and know pretty much nothing about its history. Plus, with cold, rainy weather, I knew getting out and walking around would sound less-than tempting. I think we probably could’ve gone off on foot, but I’m saving that for a warmer, drier weekend in the future. For the time being, we stuck to the road. And somehow I managed to show him pretty much all the sights! I have to thank Garmin for that, since I would’ve been going around in circles near the end without it. We drove by the FedEx Forum, Autozone Park, the Pyramid, the Peabody Hotel, the Lorraine Motel, Beale Street, the Mississippi River… We drove onto Mud Island, parked and watched a barge go by on the dimly lit river. Then we went to the Cooper-Young district (Memphis’ Ann Arbor), where I showed him The House of Mews (cat adoption center in a regular storefront); we browsed “New, Used & Rare Books”; we had mochas and he tried to teach me chess at Java Cabana. By then, the rain had ceased, but the evening temperature drop made for a chilly return to the car. We did pass by some lofts that I had found on the Internet that sounded neat, and they WERE literally a few steps from Cooper-Young, but the drive to work would be about a half-hour, and it would involve property purchasing instead of renting, so… meh.
My “lame” idea for dinner was to buy Chinese food by the pound from the local Tasty China buffet. I had considered taking him for Ethiopian (still on the list for a later date), Indian or something else semi-exotic, but I felt like relaxing after a day afield and in the rain and cold, so we went lame. Seriously, though, had I known I could get so much decent Chinese for so little money, I would’ve gone there sooner! It was $4.49/lb for take-out buffet, which ended up being a great deal because I made rice at home and we stuffed our boxes full of various chicken, beef, veggies and side items, all for around $15. It’s nice to have that variety, especially if you don’t know which dishes you prefer. We ate way too much while watching a “House” rerun on TBS, then went into Scattergories battle mode.
The bet was that whoever won would get to choose who went where for the next weekend visit. That visit will not happen until the second weekend in March (sad), as he has basketball tournaments and 30-Hour Famine the next two weekends. After that, though, we will have “Watchmen” to see and much lost time to make up. =) So, we fought hard on Scattergories, even though the prize was not all that significant. Both being of writing backgrounds, we wanted to reign supreme in that game. He held the lead throughout, but I started closing the gap in the last few rounds. I think we determined that the deciding factor was my “Liar, Liar” answer to Movie Titles, when he didn’t have time to come up with anything. I figured he’d pull out a double or triple on that one, so when he didn’t, I was able to make up ground and end with a two-point lead. However, I’ve definitely met my Scattergories match. He is far more than a worthy opponent, as he said he’d be. I’ll never tell him, but I knew it would be close—all my smack talk aside, I thought there was a chance he’d beat me even before we got out the boards, the timer and the letter die. Looking forward to the rematch…
His departure was early this morning, after which I went back to sleep, though I didn’t really feel the need. I did, however, want to feel somewhat rested after the weekend, and two nights of fitful slumber meant I hadn’t accumulated a ton of rest. So I dozed till noon-ish, then arose to shower and look online for a new church to visit this evening. I found a handful with evening services, so I’m planning to check one out at 5 or 6.
Tomorrow at lunchtime I have an appointment with a therapist at Memphis Mental Health Resources. This will be the first time I’ve seen a psychiatrist in my life (outside of one epic-fail visit to the counseling center at MSU, where the therapist wanted to help me write out a schedule for my day, with my bagel condiments being of the utmost importance—I didn’t go back for a second session) and I’m kind of excited for it. Less excited about the $80 fee, but I am still hopeful it will be of help to me. With the past two weeks of crazy mood issues, I fear the depression of yesteryear sneaking up on me without my noticing, something that I cannot allow to happen. My current road is not without deep potholes and ruts, to be sure, but it is so much less hazardous than the roads of my youth, which were often impassable and washed out by heartache, depression, fear, anxiety, stress, self-consciousness, self-loathing and pain. I want to stay off that earlier road at all costs. I don’t know what it will take—just talking to someone, implementing self-help exercises in my daily life, getting on medication—but, whatever that is, I want to do it. I want to feel my definition of “normal,” or at least have some steps in place to keep me from getting too abnormal again. There are many reasons for doing this now, but the past two weeks scared me, and that was the main thrust behind it. Costs aside, it needs to happen. It needed to happen when I was 16, 18, 20, 22… but it didn’t. So it’s happening now. I hope it will be beneficial for me and that’ll I’ll be patient enough to let it work.
All right, time to make a move toward accomplishing something today. Sorry for the blog silence, faithful readers. I’ll do my best to write more now that I’m about to be a full-fledged psycho. =)