Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Depression

No one ever tells you the whole truth about depression. They sugar coat it and let you believe that you will get better quickly. That now that you have admitted to having it you will start feeling better about yourself. All of that is the furthest thing from the truth I have ever heard. They say there are five stages to grief, I can tell you that with depression there are also five and they can be just as brutal; Denial, Isolation, Anger, Bargaining and finally Acceptance. They don't necessarily come or go in that order. For me I believe I am in the anger and isolation stages. I hate that I have depression. I hate how it makes me feel everyday. I hate the way it makes me feel like I need to isolate myself because I am a burden. I hate how I feel like I can't fix myself. I hate feeling incapable. I hate feeling like I need to hide my depression from future employers for fear of not getting a job, or being let go from a job because of it as well. The list of things I hate about depression could go on forever. It really isn't an easy thing, it is incredibly hard. One thing I hate the most is the effect it has had on my significant other.

My significant other is in the bargaining stage. He 1000% believes my depression is his families fault and he keeps playing over and over in his head things he could have done differently to make things easier for me to maybe, just maybe, have prevented me from slipping so far into this depression. What he doesn't understand is that it would have happened anyways. Nothing at all could have prevented this. There is no way he could have changed the way his parents did things, or how they have treated the both of us. His family is the way that they are and absolutely nothing about them will change. They may act nice for a bit, but I have come to realize this is just their way of making us feel comfortable so that they can slip back to their old ways and we give them yet another chance. I myself have completely distanced myself from them and even my own family because I know things won't change. I still hope one day they will and maybe there can be a cordial relationship at least, but I absolutely in no way blame any of them completely for my depression. If I did it would eat me alive even more than it already is.  

No one ever told me how hard depression is. No one told me how dark your thoughts become. How often you find yourself lying to your loved ones, doctors and coworkers. Not a single soul told me how suicidal thoughts just creep in out of no where. How you won't tell anyone about those either, all because you don't want anyone to think you aren't getting better. They don't tell you just how hard it is to even get out of bed to just shower, or how the thought of leaving the house just drains you even more. Eating, let alone cooking, becomes a nightmare. everything, everyday just feels impossible. 

For me it's been over a year since my diagnosis and every day gets harder and harder. I used to joke to my family that I'd be lucky to live to be twenty-five, but I did. The only problem is now that I only exist, I don't truly live. I had a wild and crazy ride that suddenly just stopped. I went from a fun loving, carefree person to a lump under some covers on my bed. Glimmers of the person I used to be come back every once in a while, but never for long and they exhaust me. After these few hours of my old self I sleep for days. I can see where it sometimes frustrates my SO. He wants so much to see that carefree, spontaneous and driven person to come back. To see me as happy as I once was so that we can continue on with the plans we had for our future. I want so badly to be that person again, not just for me but for him as well.

I have tried a variety of different things in hopes of getting better, sometimes they work for a bit and others never work at all. I tried completely changing my diet, more exercise and time outside. Everything only seems like a temporary fix. I occasionally I find a release in writing, but it is very sporadic. I even try to volunteer and do things to help others, but I often see others struggling and it reminds me of how I am just not getting better. Everyone suggests therapy but therapy can only help someone so much. I find it really makes you think about the whole perspective. Not just one side. The encouragement is there as well with therapy but when you aren't there all the bad things come back.

We even moved semi recently to be closer to our group of friends, to pursue a new way of life. I thought being closer to some friends that we consider family would get me out of the house more. The problem with that is that was the stupidest expectation to ever have. Ultimately what happened was our friend group started to crumble. Couples started splitting up, causing tension and everyone trying so hard to not pick sides. Then there was nothing. Everyone just started to not care about anyone else. My expectations were crushed in that no one really cared and they no longer wanted to even spend time with one another. You always hope your friends will be there to pull you out of a slump, but with all the shit going on in everyone's lives it just doesn't happen. Those sorts of expectations can crush the tiniest glimmer you have of seeing a way out and turn it into more darkness. 

I have tried to write this post a million times and then deleted everything. I wasn't sure if anyone would even want to read any of this. That maybe it would be too raw, too real, too hard for most people to read. Ultimately I needed to write all of this to share how hard the struggle is, to maybe hope that people can further understand depression a bit. I can't even really begin to touch on the surface of how much depression has affected my life and everyone's around me. I don't want this blog to turn into something sad, but I want it to be real and right now depression is a very very real thing for me. I hope that all of you maybe take something from this and see how much someone with depression may be struggling. 

As a side note I will be back to regular posting soon. I have been struggling to edit and have things come off in a much more interesting way. I sometimes find my posts too short. I am trying to add more detail for you guys but still keep the story going at a quick pace. I have some awesome stories to share with you guys and some that may bring in some Christmas cheer, or well maybe just some laughter for you guys. 

Sunday, 12 November 2017

Possible Mistake

When I got home I immediately noticed Sarah's truck parked in front of the house. This whole not having a cell phone was starting to get old. I really didn't want to talk to Sarah yet. I parked my Jeep and slowly made my way into the house already dreading the gossip and drama I was about to walk in to.

"Josie! I have been waiting here for you forever! Please tell me what happened. When I got to work this afternoon Glenda told me you quit. But everyone else is saying that can't be true. Ed even said to me she phoned here and fired you. You know she can't do that right?"The words flew out of Sarah's mouth like word vomit.

"Slow down, I did not quit she phoned and fired me. Yes I understand she can't do that and I don't really care. I can't work with her anymore. I also have a new job and I start tomorrow."

"I knew she wasn't telling the truth. Please come back I don't want to work with the new girl she's a cow. Wait.... New job? Already? Where?"

" I got a job working for one of the Chuckwagon drivers. I start tomorrow."

"Well damn. I guess we should go out tonight and celebrate."

"You know what I'd rather just go to bed. It's been a rough day."

"Okay then. Come by tomorrow night after your done work? I'll have the wine."

"I'll see what time I get off."


The next morning I was up way earlier than normal. I slowly got dressed and did my normal morning routine. I even had time to make myself breakfast, which never happens. I am one of those people that gives themselves ten minutes to get ready and rush out the door. I got into my Jeep and started my drive to work. I made it there really early. There wasn't anyone at the barn yet so I stayed in my jeep for a little while longer.

The peace and quiet was great, I don't think I had had a moment since I moved here that I could just sit back and enjoy a moment. So I finally took the time to enjoy it. The barn was surrounded in a misty fog that gave it an almost eerie look. The horses all had their heads hanging out of the stalls and I could see their breath. I could hear them shifting their weight here and there some kicking at the stall doors, some even tossing their buckets to try and search for more gain. I had forgotten how peaceful mornings with horses could be.

The peace was suddenly broken by a loud older Chevy pickup. The truck backed into the trees further down from me. An old man got out and immediately whipped it all out and took a pee right out in the open. I sat in the jeep in shock, I knew he couldn't see me where I was parked. Eventually the old man made his way to the barn. I assumed this was the other person who worked for the Little Grizzly. I got out of my Jeep and made my way slowly over to the barn.

"Good Morning, I am Josie. I am supposed to start this morning."

The man turned to look at me and that is when I noticed he had a port in his neck. He pushed on this port and then started talking to me.

"The Grizzly told me you were starting today." There was a pause for the man to catch his breath. "My name is Larry."

Larry proceeded to feed the horses and tell me all the details on all thirty horses. He told me about all their quirks and where they all came from. We turned all the horses out and started cleaning stalls. it was then that Larry and I chatted a little bit and I started to think I had maybe made a mistake.

"What brought you to come work for Grizzly?" Larry had to pause lots to breathe.

" One of the girls at the main barn suggested I come down here so I did and now here I am." I shrugged.

"Well hopefully you can stick it out. The Grizzly is hard to work for. I am just here for spring training. I won't be going on the road this year. It was too hard on me." 

Larry rested his pitchfork in the bed of the truck, that we had been slowly filling with the soiled bedding. We had done all thirty stalls in an hour and now I found out we needed to hand fork it out of the back of the truck!

"Larry how do you still do all this at your age?" Larry had to be well into his 60's. This job was very labour intensive and I didn't yet know what had led to him having the port in his neck, but I could already see this job took a toll on him.

" I love the horses. I love being around them and I am usually the only help here. If I didn't do it who would?"

This statement made me immediately quiet. I wasn't sure what to take from what he said. Had I made a mistake by taking this job? Was I about to waste my time to ultimately have to find another job?


Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Ramblings

All my life I grew up knowing my parents hated me. Nothing I ever did was right. I wasn't allowed over at friends houses, I wasn't allowed to leave school property ever. I grew up isolated and alone for the most part. I dreamed everyday of leaving. Eventually books and my pets became my escape, thru books I eventually had a new dream. A dream of someone saving me. All these books talked about strong caring men or people and that's all I wanted in my life.

When I would read I could be who ever I wanted and be where ever I wanted to be. When I was reading I had friends, people who in my head I imagined actually cared about me. I was happy when I read books the world became a much better place. My parents in the other hand saw it as something different. Instead of me watching tv with them I would read and to them this meant something was wrong with me. As I got older they said I was lazy because I spent so much time reading. Never once did I miss doing my chores, caring for my animals or doing all of the other jobs they deemed to be jobs for me.

Eventually they started letting me have friends over, but once my friends realized that coming to my house meant they had to do chores they stopped coming and I became lonesome again. While all my school friends played soccer and went to camp I spent my summers push mowing the lawn, chopping wood, doing hay and fencing, and more often than not I had to help my dad with his side business cleaning up junk from people's yards and old buildings. All of my parents friends used to say they hoped they never had a boy because they already worked my little sister and I like slaves. Every other kid hated when summer ended but not me, I loved school as it meant I actually got to be a kid again. School wasn't always a safe place either but it was better than being at home. I remember once asking to go to a friends birthday party during the summer months and my mother lost it. She chased me around the property trying to hit me with the broom. She told me over and over again how she never wanted me. How she had friends who knew my birth mother and how I should go back to her as I was an ungrateful piece of shit. I was maybe nine years old at this time.

Even my aunts and uncles hated me. My mother worked at the family business and would always tell them I was a terrible child. That I did and said things I never did. One of my aunts and one of my older cousins were the only ones who didn't believe it. I was a quiet child too scared to say anything in case it was wrong, if I was wrong it often ended in me being hurt. I once innocently told my dad at the tender age of eleven that I had a boyfriend, completely innocent as all relationships are at that age, but my dad called me a whore and locked me outside in minus thirty weather in just a tshirt. All of these are just small examples of the things that happened in my childhood.

Ultimately as an adult this had followed me. I went into loveless and abusive relationships because of all of this. Until the day I realized I needed to save myself. I'm sorry I haven't been posting. The medical issues I spoke of months ago just became too overwhelming. My doctor diagnosed me with anxiety and depression. My life became consumed by my diagnosis I suspected I had both but the official diagnosis floored me. It took me a long time to wrap my head around it all and I was ultimately going to stop writing out my story all together but my therapist suggested it may be a good thing for me to get it all out there, to share the crazy story she says is my life. AND to maybe, just maybe help people overcome the stigma that surrounds both anxiety and depression. I hope people are still reading and I'm sorry for staying silent for so long.

Tuesday, 17 January 2017

The Little Grizzly

I stumbled out of bed and made my way to the phone. 

"Hello?"

"Hello Josie this is Glenda."

"Yes."

"I am just phoning to let you know that we have to let you go. You have failed to follow the company phone policy and because of that I am forced to let you go."

"Well That is interesting seeing as I haven't had a phone for weeks now."

"You were just using it this morning and that was the last straw."

"If I had a functioning phone don't you think we would be talking on that rather than my landlords phone?"

"I know you just have it turned off right now. You're lying to me."

"I do not need to deal with your mental abuse anymore Glenda. Have a good life."

And with that I hung up the phone and turned back to face Ed.

"So what did the witch just say to you?" Ed asked.

"She fired me."

"She isn't your boss she doesn't have that authorization. You know that right?"

"Yea I know but I don't want to work another day with a woman like that."

"I don't blame you. So you going to go look for a new job now?"

"Yea I guess I have to eh?" I slumped down into the nearest chair. I wasn't even sure where to start with a job search here. Back in Ontario I had never once interviewed for a job, people had always approached me offering me jobs or asking me to help them out for a bit during their busy seasons. 

"Well some of the Chuckwagon guys are down at the track right now. They are always looking for people and I know you had said it looked fun." 

"You know what I'll make my way down there now and see if I can find a job with one of them. I've missed working with horses."

I when to my room and changed into more barn appropriate attire and hopped in my Jeep. It was finally warm enough that I took the front roof panels off and let the wind blow my hair everywhere. I drove in the direction I thought the track was in but turns out I was wrong. I got lost a few times before I finally pulled into a gas station and asked for directions, the cashier must have thought I was crazy as who doesn't have a phone with maps on it. 

I finally made it to the track and after speaking with a lady at the front desk had the name of a man looking for help she called him The Little Grizzly. I drove to the area she said he would have his horses stalled at. I knew who he was as soon as I pulled up. 

The Little Grizzly was shorter than me, which is quite a feat, his skin looked like leather and his eyes looked mean as the devil. I wasn't sure I was making a good choice in going up to talk to him but what was the worst thing that could happen. 

"Hello. My name is Josie, The lady at the front desk said you were looking for some help." I said offering my hand for a hand shake. 

"I am but not just anyone. What sort of experience do you have?" Grizzly replied completely ignoring my out stretched hand. 

"I used to managed a horse farm before I moved out here."

"What kind of horses?"

"Quarter horses, but I have more experience with Thoroughbreds as I spent a lot of time in hunter/jumper barns."

"Okay well come down tomorrow and you can start. Seven AM, that's when my horses get fed. Frank will be here then he can show you how I like things done." Then he turned his back towards me and started walking to his truck.

"I will see you tomorrow then." 

I walked back to my Jeep and wondered what the heck I had just gotten myself into. 

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Red

Sorry everyone! I have been so busy lately I forgot to come and post! I am going to try and get back to posting more regularly. I finally have some free time coming up. I hope you all had a fantastic holiday season.
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I spent a few hours being a lone wolf at the bar. I did a lot of thinking and a lot of drunk texting before I realized I needed to make my way home. I pulled out my phone and called Sarah.

"Hey, I'm drunk at BP can you and Brian come get me and my jeep?"

"Of course we can. I am not overly surprised you're drunk after the day I heard you had."

"Yeah well Kens a fucking dick. If he were on fire I wouldn't even pee on him."

"We will see you soon." Sarah laughed.

The next few weeks at work went by quickly and quietly, well quietly for a place with more drama than a high school. Glenda had taken it on herself to be mine and Sarah's new bff/boss. It was sort of terrible. Glenda laid out a bunch of new rules we had to follow and would be a bitch if we didn't think they were going to work. Then it would be like a switch flipped and she would be sickly nice to us both and try to get us to say terrible things about our coworkers. It was getting to both Sarah and I that we had both started taking to going to her house and having a bottle of wine each night just to take the edge off. Some nights there were even adventures to any of the local bars which always led to a crazy time, one particular time ended in my phone going for a swim in tequila so I was out a phone until a new one could get sent to me.

I felt myself getting caught in a downward spiral that I couldn't get out of. Weekends became taken over by work and anytime not working was taken over by drinking. I wasn't making any new friends that I could hold a intellectual conversation with. Everyone seemed to be a bar star and seemed to think that it was more than okay to do lines of coke on a regular basis. The more I surrounded myself with these people the more I drank and the more angry I felt myself becoming.

The final straw came sooner than I had thought. After a long weekend of partying I came into work to find a new employee that would be working along side Sarah and myself. I had no idea that we were looking for anyone else as we didn't need a third person at all to do what Sarah and I did. I stopped at Randi's desk to have a quick chat with her before we officially opened and before heading back to the shop and to find out what was going on with the new employee. I didn't even get a hello out before Glenda screamed at me to get to work.

"I am technically here early so unless I am getting paid overtime or getting off early today I am aloud to stop and have a quick chat Glenda."

"I don't care get to work!" Glenda screamed at me.

Randi and I both exchanged a look as she whispered "What the fuck."

I didn't say a word as I went back to start working. As I started doing things I felt myself getting mad. Glenda and the new girl, who I discovered was actually a close friend of Glenda's, just gossiped about their friends. The first three hours were spent with me doing all the work while Techs came and bitched at me about Glenda. After four or five people had come up to me as I was trying to do a two person job by myself, as Sarah wasn't in today, I finally saw red. I threw down my tools and I walked out. I told Randi on my way out I needed to cool off and I would be back tomorrow. I drove around for a while before finally heading back to the house.

"What are you doing home right now?" Ed asked me as I walked thru the door.

"I'm surprised Randi didn't text you and tell you that I had left an hour ago. Glenda got on my last nerve." I said throwing my hands in the air.

"That woman is a cunt she will get fired soon don't you worry." With that Ed went back to watching his movie.

I went to have a nap but I couldn't fall a sleep. The whole situation kept playing on my mind. I eventually got up and asked Ed if I could use the house phone and I called in to talk to the finance manager.

"Hey Josie, I tried to call you but your phone went right to voicemail. I am glad you called in."

"My phone has been broken for weeks. I guess you wouldn't know that though."

"No, but now I am not worried about you anymore. I thought something happened to you."

"I'm okay. I wanted to talk to you about what happened this morning if that is okay with you?"

"Of course, that is why I have been calling you. Glenda said you were on your phone all morning and suddenly just left."

"Are you serious? I was not. How could I be when I don't even have a phone right now? Did you talk to anyone else?"

"Yes I did. The guys in the back are telling me she yelled at you this morning before your start time and then proceeded to make you do all the work as she gossiped with Shasta. They don't know why you left though."

"I just couldn't do it anymore. Everyone treats each other like garbage, and Glenda acts so self entitled that I had to leave before I said something I would regret." I sighed.

"Understandable. You could have came and talked to me before you left though."

" I would have said all those mean things to you. I needed to calm down."

"Alrighty, well we will see you tomorrow?"

"Of course."

I hung up the phone and went to lay down again. Not even 10 minutes later Ed knocked on my door.

"Phones for you Josie."




Saturday, 19 November 2016

Settling In

The next few weeks were very uneventful. I spent the majority of my time working, even weekends as work suddenly got busy. I slowly realized over the weeks that I actually hated my job. I had never been in a situation before where I hated a job so I was trying hard to tough it out hoping that a new manger would make it better , whenever he finally started. Screaming matches in the building were such a common occurrence that I would often come home at night completely drained mentally. I knew one day soon that I would get yelled at over something stupid, I just hopped it would be a long way off. The day came sooner than I ever would have thought.


I came in to work that morning dragging my feet as always. I was honestly starting to dread coming into work. I still hadn't made any friends other than Sarah, and that for the most part just felt like it was something out of convince rather than a true friendship. I was starting to feel really down on myself as I am normally I very social person. I knew right away that something was up. There was a new person sitting behind one of the desks in the service department, and boy of boy did she ever look angry.

"Hello. My name is Ronda and I am the new customer relations manager. You must be Josie."

"Nothing gets by you eh?" My joke must have hit a nerve as immediately her face scrunched up  in distaste.

"I see they weren't lying about your sense of humor." She snapped at me.

"Well someone needs to try lighten it up around here." And with that I walked back into the shop.

I was organizing and trying to plan out my day when my phone chimed. I looked down and saw a text from Sarah.

"I'm gonna be late today, Kevin is running a fever."

I put my phone in my pocket and went about my morning. Before long it was coffee break and the saleswoman at our branch approached me and asked me to come sit with her and Ronda. I was apprehensive but figured I should try to be social and pleasant.

As we all sat down at Glenda's desk we actually had a good conversation. We talked about the upcoming meteor shower and I quickly discovered that Glenda and Ronda were old friends. Our break was going by quickly.

Just as we were finishing up my phone beeped again with another text message. I went to look at it and next thing I knew Ken our only other sales person comes fly over screaming at me to get off my phone. I saw out of the corner of my eye Ronda give Glenda a weird look.

I have this thing were when people yell at me I just block them out. I stand there and take it. I can't remember exactly what Ken said to me but I remember lots of screaming. Ronda eventually stepped in and told him to stop. When everyone as done screaming I just turned  and walked away. I went the rest of the day working solo before our finance manager came to speak with me.

"Josie, I just wanted to talk to you about what happened with Ken. I know we don't have a branch manager at the moment but I have reported his behavior to the owners. I am not sure why he went off on you while you were on your break, but it was inappropriate and I am fully expecting him to apologize to you."

"You and I both know I will never get an apology from him. He has never apologized to anyone else he has screamed at here. I don't expect it to change now. I am just going to avoid him from now on. If he needs me to do something on a unit for him from now on he can use the correct channels."

"I hope the owners find us a manager soon. Everyone has been ignoring policy and been very rude to each other over the last three weeks. It has been a terrible environment for you to have started in. I wouldn't blame you if you quit, but keep in mind everyone here but Ken really likes you and you are doing a great job."

"Thanks, well I am going to go home now. See ya later."

I got into my Jeep and drove to the Boston Pizza down the road where I had the bartender pour me a strong drink.



 



Friday, 4 November 2016

Heartbreaks


Hey guys as a heads up I am not sure if I will be posting much in the next little bit. My doctor has diagnosed me something not so great and I am having a hard time coming to terms with it. It also isn't helping that my work is making it even more difficult for me to get better by blaming me for how I am feeling. I am really trying to take some time off everything. Writing everything out has been great for me, but it has also made me relive some terrible things, that I will eventually get to in my writing I promise. I for sure won't be posting next week, but hopefully I will have some of my posts I already have written edited and ready to go for the following week. I hope you all have a great weekend! 

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The night ended uneventfully, well if Cary leaving with Les is uneventful. Our truck ride home was very quiet too. I had a lot of time to think and thinking was never a good thing for me. I started reflecting on the last year and a half. 

The day after Jeremy and I had broken up was hard. I went into work and tried to act like everything was normal. When the barn phone rang I was tempted to not answer, but I knew then my boss would know something was wrong. 

"Good Morning Josie."

"Morning Charles, what do I owe the phone call."

" I saw you were down there early today. Just checking in."

"The roads were great so I got here quicker than I thought."

"Okay. Well have a good day!"

With that I decided to stop doing office duties and work one of the horses.Working with the horses always kept me grounded. Their smell, easy breathing and willingness always brought me such joy. Just as I was slipping a bridle onto Tea I heard the barn door creak open and in walked Charles.

"Okay Josie you can't lie to me, something is up. You were here early, and you have all the stalls done already and your going for a ride. What is going on?"

"It's nothing, I just have more energy than usual." I sighed as I walked Tea towards the arena.

"It has to do with Jeremy doesn't it?"

"It may but I am not ready to talk about it."

"You guys broke up again didn't you? I'm sure in a day or two he will come crawling back as always."

"I don't think so this time Charles. It feels a little more permanent this time."

"Well if that's the case maybe now when your  mom comes back from visiting your sister you will finally take me up on the offer to live here in the barn. I know a big part of you turning it down before was because you didn't want to live further away from Jeremy. "

"You know what I should. Maybe moving up here would be better for me. Plus I can ride the girls more. Once my mom is back in a couple months I'll move up here."

"I'll find a contractor to renovate the loft for you. But chin up I know you'll be okay."

I put my foot in the stirrup and swung my leg over Teas back  and started putting her thru her paces. After an hour I looked over to see Charles had Maxim saddled up. 

"You want me to ride her next? Because if so you'll have to swap saddles out."

"Lets go for a trail ride, It has been far to long since I have been in the saddle."

"Alright then."

I could help but think I was so lucky to have a boss that genuinely cared about me and even saw me as an extended family member. Soon it was time for me to go to my other job. I went and used the shower in the loft to get rid of the horse smell and changed into business clothes.

As I walked in I hear my name being screamed from across the store.

"Jos! Jos!" Sasha screamed. " I am so sorry, I heard what happened already. If you need anything just let me know."

"How did the news even get out?"

"Come on Jos, we live in a tiny ass town and we all went to school together. News like this travels faster than anyone wants it to." 

"I guess so. Let's just pretend everything is fine okay?"

"Okay! But I'm just saying you were too good for that jackass anyways."



It was from that moment on I had to start pretending I was okay. Tonight was a night that made it hard to pretend. Seeing anothers relationship spiraling downward triggered a memory that I was sure was going to lead to more dreams. 


Once I got home I walked thru the door and found my other bottle of whiskey. I made myself another drink and went to bed. I needed to make sure there were no dreams tonight.