Sunday, May 22, 2016

Packing for the Move

Packing is going.. well it's going. I feel like there is still a TON to do, and I'm trying to make sure that I don't go into "THROW EVERYTHING INTO BOXES MOVING DAY IS NOW" mode. I know we have more time than that. Logically I know that.

I've sorted through most of the old memories and bins, and I have left to pack, approximately one medium sized bookshelf worth of books and small things that would not fit in other boxes or bins.

I have most of the school stuff I'm keeping, Math and English notes, Psychology notes etc, set into two tidy stacks, of first semester, and second semester, and I think I can fit all of that into my black star backpack.

I sorted the last of my clothes today, donate pile, keep pile (neatly folded), and trash pile which is already out to the dumpster thanks to Osaka. She also helped me, once I had set aside approximately two weeks of clothing for packing into a suitcase, put the rest of my keepable clothes into the spacebags that I got. Those I may keep out since those bags are sturdy and can be used to cushion in the moving van.

I've got one plastic bin that is not damaged left that is empty, which I will carefully fill tomorrow I think. I am tentatively planning to put photos, kept greeting cards and doll postcards and the like into a decorative box, and put that into that bin, with some of smaller doll sorted boxes, which contain clothes and accessories for the dolls.

I unpacked a bunch of emotional baggage as well as clothes and stuffed animals today when I was sorting through a cracked storage bin and trying to figure why I'd kept a handful of stuffies. Many of them were early on gifts from the ex-husband, and some of them were from an older boyfriend who lived in East Texas and brought gifts when he would come to Arlington to see me. It took me finding a small wooden box that said "Sajin" on it for me to connect the dots. I have tucked away the bits for keeping, and donated any stuffies that have unwanted baggage but are in good condition. I have a bunch of little TY beanie babies, some of which are almost 22 years old.

This is probably the least stressful packing I've ever had, as Osaka and Ringo/Dragonmouse have been really supportive and mainly doing their own thing and leaving me to it. Both have happily helped when I have needed help, and both have kindly left me alone when I just needed to work on something by myself. I'm going to miss living with them both very much.

I packed MOST of my dolls away really early on, because I needed them safely out of the way to contend with moving all of my things around the room and apartment in order to carefully pack each type of item together, so I don't have random boxes of "I don't even know what this is" like I did trying to sort what we pulled from storage.

I have left out for travel and because some don't have doll boxes, but I do have carrying cases Robbie, Ichigo, Ro, Owen, and Link. Owen and Link will go into their boxes on moving day. Robbie has a special bunting with pillows that Osaka made for me, and Ichigo and Ro will go in the Dream of Doll carrier, which is meant to safely cushion and carry two dolls.

I'm planning on having Robbie or Ichigo out for photos at some of the places that Mom and I go, while we take the scenic route back to Texas. I'd like to have Owen and Link at hand as well.

I wanted to take photos of many of my dolls with Osaka's before we left for the farm, but since I put most of mine away early on, I have only been able to take photos with some of them.

Tomorrow I hope to do another photoshoot or photostory with Owen and Osaka's Lorelei. Today I took pictures of Ichigo with Yukimura (also Osaka's).






I feel like if Tsubaki were to grow up, he could look quite a bit like Isao. I may just be partial though. ;)

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Final GPA and Moving

So it was pointed out to me, that I have completely neglected to mention that the school year has ended, let alone mention how I did. Finals week was hectic, but I scraped by with a C in Psychology, and an A in each of my other two classes for Spring. So my final GPA for the year is 3.7, which is only a minor step down from my 4.0 first semester. I wish I could have pulled down an A in Psych and maintained the 4.0, but I am proud that I at least passed and retained knowledge. I hope to do better in any future psychology courses.

Tomorrow I plan to go by TCC and request my transcripts to make transitioning to a Texas school easier for the Fall semester, and to sell the books I will not be keeping. I'm keeping my American Sign Language textbook and DVDs, and my Religions of the World, and English books. My book for English should help for further classes.

As rough as my health has been the last year I'm really quite proud of how well I managed to do. My professors really were willing to work with me when I was in and out of the hospital so much in Fall, for which I am thankful, and my health mostly stabilized by Spring, though it improved drastically with the change in medication in February.

Since finals week I have been busy with packing, and pairing down my possessions to a reasonable amount. I own more than I realized and I have been carefully going through and packing, trashing, and donating as necessary. I have a ways to go, but each day I make a small amount of progress, and some days I do REALLY well.

We should be safely out of Virginia by the end of the month, and from there my internet access will be sporadic. My cell phone is definitively cut off, but I will have my laptop and plan to go into town once Osaka and I safely reach Tennessee, to send Mom some landmark pictures so that she can recognize what to look for coming in towards the property.

ETA: OH YEAH. I forgot to mention that EVERY SINGLE professor I have had, has encouraged me to pursue teaching, specifically at the college or university level. Kind of an important thing to forget. :P I will probably actually listen to all seven of my professors and switch my major to education.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Nightmares, Medication, Migraines, and Packing.

Weird nightmare I was living with my hoarder father again. Also dreamt that an elder sister was asking me to help look after her newborn baby (the baby in question is a different person's child in the waking world) and then was quietly judging me for being unprepared. I fell asleep in dream having a cry with a followup of anxiety attack and trying to figure out how my careful packing and planning had landed me living with my father in a terrifyingly filthy mess again.

I woke up briefly at 4:30am in screaming pain from the migraine Osaka diagnosed at 9pm last night. Still have that going. I will be getting up and out of the apartment as soon as the pharmacy opens across the street. I called in refills for some prescriptions last night, and discovered that I don't have refills on my anxiety medicine. I need to wait a little while for the pharmacy to have been open long enough to call my doctor so that I can be sure my medicine will be there, and/or call my doctor and ask them to please send the refill to the pharmacy so I can do it in one trip.

I am in screaming head-pain. Things to do, and I mostly just want to run crying from the apartment and hide in a cold dark hole and not be conscious.

In positive news a friend had an extra (correct dosage, never opened) inhaler on hand and was able to get that to me..yesterday? So if I can sort out the anxiety medicine issue with my doctor I should have enough medicine to get me to early June overall.

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Need Inhaler ASAP

I posted an update to our GoFundMe. When I was raising funds to fill my prescriptions my inhaler was full, freshly refilled. Due to a combination of stress, allergies, and dust, my inhaler is now empty. This is of great concern, as while we continue to pack and prepare, the dust and pollen levels are unlikely to lessen.

In theory I will still be able to receive treatment in emergency if we can get to the emergency room, but I would still be without a rescue inhaler (which could prevent needlessly expensive ER visits). I mentioned on the GoFundMe, only the need for my inhaler but I am also out of my as needed migraine medication which it would be helpful to fill.

Between weather, stress from preparing from the move, and strain on my sinuses from allergies, I have been in a non-stop cycle of migraines and trouble breathing. Based on my medical receipts and depending on what kind of coupons/deals Walmart pharmacy has going I should be able to fill both my inhaler and my imitrex script if we can raise $80-$90.

Realistically I'm more concerned about my inhaler, as I do have my older less effective migraine medication if I absolutely need it, but I need that inhaler in the next 24 hours if even remotely possible.

We continue to be thankful for all the assistance that we have received, and we appreciate all forms, whether by signal boost, financial contribution or emotional support. Thank you all.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Moving is always stressful..

Today I have sorted three and a half large plastic tubs that were in storage and have donated a third, thrown away a third, and sorted the remainder into art supplies, clothes to keep, and doll stuff. I still have one bin left to sort, which is mostly full of old clothing (most will be too small for me now, like high school clothes), and had my childhood quilt, and some doll stuff on top. Also my doll-scaled Christmas tree.

I have a ways to go, but the end is in sight. I have put my doll boxes into larger boxes for the moving truck but will probably remove those from the large boxes when we load them into Mom's truck at Osaka's family farm in Tennessee.

I need to ask the cubic feet of the bed of the truck so that Osaka and I can practice tetrising the boxes and bins and figure out what if anything I could leave behind to be mailed to me later. The main goal is to get rid of ANYTHING that I will not use, and to make sure everything is sorted in a way that makes sense so that unpacking will be easy when we get back to Texas.

When I get to Texas I will need bookshelves, a desk, a dresser, and some other basic furniture pieces. I am not taking any furniture with me, just clothes, dolls, doll stuff (clothing and furniture), some art, books, and my gaming stuff (consoles etc).

One of the unforeseen difficulties of sorting through these bins, is that many of them were thrown together when Nick kicked me out in 2007 or 2008, and much of it went straight to our climate controlled storage unit when I bought my bed. So, I'm sorting through tangible memories, one item at a time. Some of the items are easy to donate, and others I'm having to set aside and let my heart breathe before I make a decision. I'm not a hoarder like Dad, but the few items I do still own, have quite a bit of meaning to me.

It's strange to be going through the childhood memories of someone else. This person functionally ceased to exist when I was twenty-eight, and officially in my early thirties. There are no childhood memories, photographs, letters, cards, etc for Rory. These are still my belongings but many of them have another name lovingly written all over them.

It feels rather like sorting through the possessions of a well loved family member who has passed away. Looking through these boxes and bins is weird and hard but very necessary.

I can look around the apartment now and see the end in sight. I have a bit left to do, but I am nearing the end.

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Official Introduction of Link, Doll Legend Parado.

Link, my Doll Legend Parado, arrived several days back (April 25th), but this week and last I had finals and I have been packing and preparing for the move so I didn't do photos until today when I finished his shield.







The shield came from an officially licensed candy tin, from when they did the 3DS release/re-master of Zelda: Ocarina of Time. I believe Osaka picked it up for me with the express purpose of maybe someday it being a shield for a tiny Link cosplay. I don't think either of us expected me to ever find the perfect sculpt to BE a tiny Link.

I also have a brown Camellia Dynasty Sage, who will be Epona, but she is unpainted so I don't have photos of her yet.



He's so stinkin' cute even without his tunic, belt, various accessories. I want to get a plain wooden trunk and embellish it to look like one of the trunks from the Zelda games partly to safely store his gear, and partly so I can do Link finding his tools photo stories. It would be so cute. :D

And for the curious closer shots of the shield and how I turned a tin lid into a functional shield with a bit of sticky-back foam and black elastic loops.





I absolutely love this little guy. Welcome home (belatedly) Link! :D Your tunic, Epona, etc will come as I can make things happen but I am so pleased to have you.

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Food and I have a complicated relationship.

I have a complicated and tenuous relationship with food and weight. As I may have touched on, or maybe not, I'm really not sure, food was something of a limited quantity when I was growing up, and as a result I tend towards food aggression when I am inclined to eat.

Pro-tip, do not ever reach for something that I have staked as MINE, whether it was purchased for me, I made it, or I purchased it for myself. Most especially with food, but that tends to also go for physical possessions. I do not steal, and I do place value on the few items that I tend to own.

So, on food, appetite, weight etc. I grew up thin, until I was about thirteen, and reached a "healthy" weight. I was not fat, chubby, etc, I was putting on muscle, and was of a short but stocky build. Then asthma set in around the same time as I started properly going through the wrong puberty. My weight stayed pretty steady as almost plus sized, but it's mostly muscle, and I didn't understand that there were different body types or why the more I worked out the thicker I got. I was a skinny little kid. I was a muscular/stocky teen with ridiculous breasts (DD at fifteen), and I got FAT after I married at nineteen. I put on some weight early on due to depression, and eating habits, and a sudden decrease in physical activity.

Before I married I used to wander around and go for very long walks at night, when it was cool out in the Texas summers, or at least not in the triple digits (Fahrenheit). Nick was a homebody though and never wanted to leave our home (no matter where we lived). In contrast to my own parents encouraging me to play outside, have sleepovers at friends houses etc, his mother strongly discouraged leaving the house except for work or school. This is part of why Nick moved far away for college.

Our marriage was terrible, and while we were generally civil to each other, we didn't really like each other much at first, but neither of us thought that we could find anyone who would actually tolerate our differences. We ended up moving around quite a bit shortly after we married and ended up moving from Fort Worth down to McAllen. There I went from about 5'2" and 160 lbs, to 5'2" and probably over 300 lbs. I don't actually know what I weighed at my biggest. I refused to look at a scale. I do know that within one year I doubled in size, and before I might have died of it, his mother kicked me out while he waited to go to Navy boot camp.

I stayed with my father again for I think six months and slowly tried to stabilize my diet and eating habits. I gave up soda, I ate regular healthy meals in much smaller portions and cut out most junk food, and I began to feel something like human again. Then I joined Nick in Great Lakes, Illinois for about six months and we went back to eating out all the time and he guilted me into drinking soda again. I had not been able to be in contact with him much while he was in basic, and he didn't know I'd given up soda and snack foods so that is what he had loaded up on in preparation for my arrival. Then he got angry when I told him I'd given up soda and junk food. We ate nothing but frozen meals or fast food, and I spent my time miserable and cold, experiencing snow for the first time properly, from October to March.

When we came to Virginia we went to the commissary and I put my foot down about including healthy meals for myself at least. I was tired of being fat, hating what I saw in the mirror, and hating myself for not standing up to him when he would mock me for being fat, but refuse to buy healthy food. We fought quite a bit about food, and it wasn't until our marriage truly fell apart and I moved in with my best friend Osaka, that I was able to FINALLY get out of the house regularly again, eat proper meals, and exercise portion control.

I had a bit of a setback when my father had his strokes and I moved back to Texas for about nine months and put on weight from the stress of the divorce, my father's health, and trying to find work. I lost it almost as soon as I came back to Virginia, and while I am still heavy now, my weight fluctuates now more by medication, regular access to nutritional food, and remembering to eat.

One of the funny (not funny) things about my health circling the toilet for the last several years is that a common side effect of most medications is either extreme weight gain or loss of appetite (or both!). I have struggled with this, and frankly I have to be reminded to eat.

I have always been prone to distraction. Give me a good book or video game and I will not eat, sleep, or do anything till I've completed it, unless prompted and prodded. So I find myself legitimately forgetting to eat for a few days, wondering why I feel like garbage, or meticulously planning careful regulated snacks and making sure to eat them when I take my medicine. It depends on how busy I am, and whether I'm manic, depressive, or in a mixed state.

I have lost SO MUCH weight in the last several months, a truly unhealthy amount in a very short time and all of it was muscle mass. I have been slowly eating high protein, high carb snacks or meals, but finding the balance is hard. The muscle is slowly returning but my body is very damaged from it's trying to self destruct all over the place in 2015.

I was really proud of myself when for the first time in months I was able to help carry groceries home from the store again without dislocating my shoulder. That was a couple of days ago. Either Monday or yesterday before I slept for several hours.

Food/weight is a complicated and delicate balance and I'm not sure I'll ever be happy with my body, but I think I may finally be on the right track. The food that I do eat, is healthy, and I exercise reasonable portion control, which is not something that comes naturally to me. I will probably always be food aggressive, but I hope that I will also continue to have the presence of mind to plan ahead and make responsible food choices.

As an adult, who is now legally male, I could show in pictures how much I have changed and grown over the years which I think is where I was going with this, but I feel it is important to remember what a delicate balance diet, nutrition, and medication play even for healthy people, but especially for people with on-going health issues or concerns.

Saturday, April 23, 2016

30 Day BJD Meme Day 30

30 Day BJD Meme

Day 30: Have you ever been to a doll meetup? Did you enjoy it/do you plan to go to one in the future?

I have been to several doll meetups and scheduled several myself when I first moved out to Virginia. I did enjoy them until I met the person that nearly destroyed the hobby for me, and did destroy my marriage at one of the meetups. They are no longer in the hobby thank goodness, and I look forward to attending future meetups in Texas with Mom and Faythe.


And that is it! That is the last question of the 30 Day BJD Meme. I actually completed it this time. :D

Friday, April 22, 2016

30 Day BJD Meme Day 29

30 Day BJD Meme

Day 29: Post a picture of your dolls exploring the outside world!

Ichigo likes to go and look out at the lake.



30) Have you ever been to a doll meetup? Did you enjoy it/do you plan to go to one in the future?

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Mania

I shared this on Ravelry, Tuesday in my bipolar support group but I felt it was worth sharing elsewhere too.

"I was describing how Mania feels in my psych class this morning as a bees nest buzzing loudly, while juggling bowling balls and chainsaws that are on fire. It looks dangerous, it might feel exciting but overall it’s exhausting and we may end up badly hurt if we aren’t very careful. My teacher (retired psychologist) and my roommate agreed it was an apt description of how it feels."

Many people gloss over this aspect of the disorder because we GET SO MUCH DONE. We are capable of channeling inhuman amounts of energy for a brief period, our work output is greatly increased, our multitasking somehow works wonderfully, and when that Mania wears off many people find themselves having made dangerous and reckless decisions, ruined relationships, and losing their jobs because they can't maintain that inhuman pace they had while manic.

I have had many years to carefully cultivate a safety network, and practice impossible self control, and I am one of the lucky ones, because even though there is no medicine out there that helps my mania, I am alive, medicine compliant, and relatively healthy. While manic I still bother to go to work and/or school, despite lack of sleep and inability to adequately communicate.

I am lucky, and I am loved.

About Me

My Photo
I'm Rory or Rorek in most places. I design, sew, and craft, primarily for my Asian Ball-Jointed Dolls. I also dabble in interior design, but I'm a little out of practice.

I post about the things I enjoy, which are sewing, photographing my dolls, designing new outfits, knitting, which I started in September of 2008, thanks to my Mom, and occasionally drawing, or painting.

I also post about Life Events and how they affect me and those that I love.

Currently I am living in Coastal Virginia in the USA and working towards a degree in American Sign Language at Tidewater Community College.