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I moved in with my parents because I needed help and I needed to get out of the constant survival mode living of poverty with mental illness that is the way it is in America.

And I am getting to see a doctor once a month, and getting meds, and I have a room and food and internet and all the comforts of "middle class" America... but I'm not getting any better.

This is just an update and a chance for me to vent about how things are. I'm not asking for anything other than maybe someone to listen.

I'm exhausted most of the time.  I sleep rarely more than 3 - 4 hours at a time.  So I'm up right now, will crash a couple hours and be up at dawn again for a few more - then crash again... I haven't gotten a full "night" of sleep since I got here.

My Mum uses my OCD as a way to get out of housework.  She just leaves a trail of garbage behind her everywhere she goes in the house.  Then they get mad I never come out of my room - I do - as soon as they aren't home I come out and clean.  As soon as she comes back from work - it's a disaster.  From the time she gets off work - it's like living with Pigpen.

Her purse and keys and whatever she might be holding gets spread out over the kitchen, dining area and living room.  Then she starts to make dinner - she never puts anything away after she uses it, just puts it down wherever.  I've tried making dinner for them - they don't like my food, it's too exotic for them, or hard to measure - she is supposed to be on a diet - or both. Not that she actually measures anything or even goes to Weight Watchers anymore - she just pretends she's on a diet. And has had two stomach procedures.

I usually eat in my room because I can't stand the constant FOX noise in the living room - they are both somewhat hard of hearing now - I can hear that shit all the way into my room as it is.  IF the dishes make it into the kitchen or the sink - Col Catlady brought them in, she will just leave them in the living room.  If she "cleans" after dinner - she moved the pots, pans, etc. over by the sink and put a few things back in the fridge before she decided to do something else.  Because she knows I will clean it up - because I can't cook until the kitchen is clean.  Or I will clean it up at night when she is reading and sneaking food in the living room because Col CatLady is drunk and passing out by 9pm.  I have to hide my snacks in my room or she eats them.

So when I get up and need to eat something for breakfast - I have to clean up from dinner, their breakfasts and possibly lunch as well - depending on when I managed to sleep and get up again.  I've seen commercial kitchens after a rush less messy than ours.  So I clean.  I have to.  

Then there are the cats - there is a litter box just outside my door because I don't like stepping in shit and piss every morning.  I wear slippers inside - I will NOT walk around barefoot in this house.  Between the litter and the "accidents" - which are not accidents, but aggressive behaviour from one cat - and the general hairy filth - I just can't.  They do.  Our whole house smells like a cat box, no one comes over any more - not even their friends.

So I clean.  I clean the box, I sweep the floor, I clean the kitchen.  I straighten out the living room and vacuum when Col CatLady isn't sitting there getting drunk and shouting at FOX in agreement, which is how he spends most afternoons. I sort the wash that's piling up and pouring out the laundry room door and wash as needed.  The door can't be left open because the cats piss in the laundry, but Mum just leaves it open.  She leaves everything open.  Cabinets, the fridge... dressings, ingredients... she just doesn't close things.

So I clean the kitchen twice a day and the living room twice a week - I won't do it when Col CatLady is home because he gets in my way and uses it as time to rant at me about Teapublican rubbish.  And the rest of the time, excluding my tae kwon do class once a week, or the occasional run to the store to restock my snacks - I spend in my room.

I'm tired.  Between the cleaning, FOX and the isolation - I'm just tired.  I sleep a lot.  I don't have the concentration to read anymore - the last time I went to the library I got through one book in two weeks.  Normally I can do one a day.  I can't concentrate on Korean. I don't even keep up with the websites I used to like anymore.

I have to fend off her constant questions of "what is wrong with you?" with "I don't feel good."  Because I don't.  She's a disgusting mess maker.  She lets things rot in the fridge, on the counters... because she doesn't put things away properly, or rotate, or check the dates.  Col CatLady putters around, drinks and absorbs the FOX noise and does his little whatever he does.

I'm afraid to go outside.  The neighbour behind us blasts music all day - he's the uncle of the local judge, so no noise complaint ever goes anywhere.  The kids in the neighbourhood shoot their BB guns at pets, cars and people they don't recognise. There is a crawfish restaurant (seasonal - it's the season right now) at the end of our street that fills the air with the smell of rotting shellfish.  But mostly I'm just afraid of being shot.

I updated info with Social Security for my Disability applications - I still have no idea what will happen with that and expect at least another 4 - 6 weeks before I hear anything.  I get a small allowance so I can buy my own ecig tips and put gas in my car - but I've only used half a tank since I came back from Bossier City visiting a friend from Dallas.  I have a friend in Arkansas who is going to invite me for Shabbos some time - but we're not sure when.  And I wait.

I have another appointment this month. I will get more meds.  I have no idea when we will start actually getting into solutions rather than cataloging all the things wrong with me - or how often I will get therapy.  I wonder if Bobby Jindal and his hatred of poor people will keep me from getting the help I need - because I rely on the services he wants to destroy.

My "sailing partner" is aware of why I am down here - and treats it like it's just a vacation.  I told her we may very well not be sailing away this summer - I may not even be able to come back to Oregon by then - she simply refuses to acknowledge it and keeps making plans we can't afford - telling her friends how we are leaving in July or August.  She assumes that money will be wished into existence or we can crowd source our trip at the last moment.  

I just want to go home.  I have friends in Astoria.  Actual human beings who come to my boat and hang out. I walked everywhere, unafraid of being shot. I had a medical doctor I trusted who treated me like a person and a Social Security office that wasn't gross or hateful.  I could drive to Portland and back for therapy in my car with the allowance my parents give me now - they pay all my small bills as it is. I could keep kosher again. I could work on my boat.  I could sleep.  I'm tired of being a house elf and being tired.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (15+ / 0-)

    And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

    by Mortifyd on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 12:06:41 AM PST

  •  Good luck. (7+ / 0-)

    Sailing and the sea is the best therapy in the world. I hope you make it back to Oregon.

  •  I'm sorry you're stuck there (7+ / 0-)

    And I hope your situation changes again, soon.

    Do you think she'd be able to pick up after herself if she didn't have your organizational OCD doing all that work for her? It sounds like she has an equal and opposite organizational disorder and might not be able to see or know how to deal with the mess she makes. BUT even if that's the case, you're being treated terribly.

  •  There is a difference between being selfish (5+ / 0-)

    and being self-centered. The selfish person takes care of himself as he would another person or object.
    Put yourself on a schedule. Consider yourself employed as a housekeeper and schedule your work accordingly. If it takes a half hour to clean the kitchen before food preparation can begin, then put that into the schedule. A good employee is prompt, on schedule, efficient and well rested. Make sure that you get at least 7.5 hours of sleep, preferably nine. If you are awakened early by environmental noises, get ear plugs. Sleep studies have shown that we sleep in 90 minute cycles and it is important for cycles to be complete. Many phsyical ailments are associated with people not getting enough sleep.

    In the beginning, you will probably have to schedule whole days for particular tasks. Thoroughly cleaning a whole house takes several people a whole day (ask any cleaning service). So, you should probably schedule a thorough cleaning of one room at a time. That will make it possible to announce the schedule to your housemates and alert them to what is going on.

    The person who is employed outside the house should not be responsible for maintaining the house. Any effort she contributes is lagniappe and deserves a thank you. If the owner of the house wants to leave her things lying around, that's her business. If she lets you put them away without complaining, that's gracious of her.
    If you don't want people telling you what to do, then direct yourself and make yourself useful. That's the same advice I give to my grandsons.

    We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

    by hannah on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:23:57 AM PST

    •  she works 3 hours a day (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Renee, FloridaSNMOM, hnichols, chimene

      and she sits and reads or knits.  She's not working a full time job.  She's just a messy pig because she knows I will clean up after her.  She wasn't like this when I moved in - it started after.

      I simply don't sleep longer than 3-4 hours at a time.  whether it is a side effect of the medication I don't know. I just don't sleep longer than than here.

      I clean because I am compulsive about cleaning and not having a filthy kitchen, not because I'm asked to or feel like it for fun.  I HAVE to clean it up because it makes my skin crawl to have a nasty kitchen.  My room has always been clean and organised, even when I was a child.

      And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

      by Mortifyd on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:38:53 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  but thanks for assuming I'm selfish BTW (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FloridaSNMOM, hnichols, chimene

      These are not housemates, they are my parents.  So I can't announce ANYTHING to them - it's their house.

      She works because she wants to - it's her money for plastic surgery and the like.  There is no actual need for her to work to support the home - my dad is a retired Col with more than 3 years in grade and their house has been paid for for years.

      They couldn't pay me enough to tackle the rest of the house frankly and I don't go near it - my bedroom is off the kitchen. It's not noise that wakes me up, I can sleep through 95+ MPH winds on a boat in the water.  I just wake up after 3-4 hours here no matter what.

      I have tried to organise and help her - cleaned out the fridge, the cabinets, etc - she just doesn't care. She knows I will do it because I'm compelled to do it and she thinks it's funny.

      And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

      by Mortifyd on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:49:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  I'm not assuming you're selfish. I'm concluding (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        roseeriter, hnichols

        from your description of yourself that you are self-centered and not selfish enough to take good care of yourself. You are quick to relate other's flaws and what you will not do. What I suggest, because you, in writing here, asked for it, is that you take yourself in hand and direct yourself. You are using your obsession as an excuse to criticize others. Use it to bring order into your life.
        Of course your parents have a right to expect that an adult child pulls his own weight in the household. You are a guest and have no right to judge your parents' behavior.
        Perhaps you should have considered ahead of time what your obligations in that situation would be. But, it seems that your self-awareness quotient is rather low.

        We organize governments to deliver services and prevent abuse.

        by hannah on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 02:59:47 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Did you read the intro? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FloridaSNMOM

          This is just an update and a chance for me to vent about how things are. I'm not asking for anything other than maybe someone to listen.

          VENT.  I DID NOT ASK YOU for advice.  

          I didn't move here because I'm just too damn lazy to get along in the world, I moved here because I'm so ill I can't function on my own anymore right now and had nowhere else to go.  I more than pull my weight, but using someone's illness to your advantage is SICK.  That it's my Mum just makes it sicker.

          You have no clue.  I have every fucking right to judge their behaviour - an alcoholic and an abusive narcissist get no free passes because they didn't know how to use birth control.

          How about you get the fuck out of my diary and don't come back.

          And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

          by Mortifyd on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 11:55:50 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  Is it possible, at all, (4+ / 0-)

        to shut out what "she thinks" and do what makes you comfortable? Easy to say, impossible to do?

        It sounds to me as if you have to clean and there are things to clean. If your attitude about it was more about doing what you want and less about what others think, even if everything looked the same from the outside, might that help?

        Can you lose the idea that your mother will change and just do what you want to do because it makes you happier or more peaceful or whatever it is you are getting out of cleaning and organizing?

        You do get outside for TKD and shopping. Can you get out for more TKD? Is there somewhere else you could just walk? A mall or something? What else can you do outside of the house? Things that don't feel like you are standing in the yard waiting to be shot?

        •  What would make me comfortable (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FloridaSNMOM

          would be not being used as a houself.  Not being forced into an old gender role in a highly segregated role family because I was born female.  There is a lot more going on here than just complaining my mum makes me clean the kitchen daily.

          I'm being sabotaged by my own parent because it's easier to have a caretaker than to allow me to get back on my feet.  I want to get better and go home and live my own life as an adult.  She wants me to stay here and never leave and clean the house and pay attention to her because Col CatLady only pays attention to the cats.  She's a narcissist - and why I have BPD.

          I don't get ANYTHING out of the cleaning.  It's a compulsion.  I wouldn't mind so much if she didn't think it was funny, didn't intentionally leave messes, didn't use it as a way to wear me down.

          And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

          by Mortifyd on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 12:01:57 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  May be easier said than done (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      hnichols, FloridaSNMOM, Mortifyd
      Make sure that you get at least 7.5 hours of sleep, preferably nine.
      Medication side-effects can often interfere with sleep. It may take several tries of different medications or dosages before one gets something that allows a settled routine.

      "No one life is more important than another. No one voice is more valid than another. Each life is a treasure. Each voice deserves to be heard." Patriot Daily News Clearinghouse & Onomastic

      by Catte Nappe on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 09:40:59 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  There isn't enough mental health care (9+ / 0-)

    in the world to keep me sane after any contact with my family.

    I don't know how you do it.

    "Til you're so fucking crazy you can't follow their rules" John Lennon - Working Class Hero

    by Horace Boothroyd III on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 04:06:59 AM PST

  •  Hi (7+ / 0-)

    First, thank you for sharing your challenges.  You write with sensitivity, passion, and intelligence.  I admire your courage and fortitude, and sincerely hope that things will improve for you soon.  I do think you have taken brave and even perilous steps to change your life--steps that have the potential to lead you back to your home and to your beloved sea.

    Unlike another poster here, I don't find you self-centered at all.  You are in an enormously difficult position, and making the best of it.  You're not your parents' "employee" or "housemate."  You're their adult child who happens to be living with them at the moment.  That's never an easy situation, even in the best of circumstances.  But, despite your dependence on them, they are not your boss.  I know you understand this, and I know you are grateful for the help they do provide.  In their own, dysfunctional way they seem to care for you--tinged as it is with their own issues.  But those are THEIR issues, not yours.  Don't own their problems!!!

    I, too, spent many years living with a person who was narcissistic, borderline, and VERY messy.  This person wasn't deliberately being mean to me--although it certainly felt like it at the time.  It was just in her nature to act the way she did, and it brought her far more unhappiness than she visited upon others. I know now that she cared deeply for me, but was unable to show or even act on that affection.  With the perspective of twenty years, I can now feel compassion for her.  

    When we lived together, I tried all the strategies you've described, but none of them worked.  They didn't work because she wasn't self-aware enough to realize what was going on--her narcissism prevented that.  

    Eventually, I realized that I needed to focus on me and on what made my situation better.   It brought nothing but grief to speculate on her motives, and of course she was never going to change. If it made me feel good to clean, I did.  If I wanted to shut the door and read a book, I did that.  If she wanted to belittle me, I took it as proof of her illness, not mine.

    If it helps, you might think about that--focus on your goals and things you can do--however small--to make today better.  Hard, I know!  But your posts show you are smart, determined and resilient.  I'm not only pulling for you, I have confidence in you!

    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. -- Arthur C. Clarke

    by mathGuyNTulsa on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 06:40:41 AM PST

    •  when she laughs in your face (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FloridaSNMOM, mathGuyNTulsa

      and leaves a trail of shit behind her while laughing - it's a little hard not to take it personally.  

      The house was not like this the first couple of weeks I lived here.  Once she realised I will clean because I have to - she just quit.  

      Then she started leaving messes on purpose stating she knew I would clean them up with a laugh.

      I barely come out of my room as it is.  My room and bathroom are spotless.  I can't even sit through a 45 minute show or read a paragraph, and I've read everything in the house.

      I'm having a rough time right now.  The last two weeks have been really hard.  Being mocked and used and undermined daily take their toll.  Being on meds and being unable to sleep take their toll.  Being told she expects me to stay down here permanently "because faaaaaamily" takes a toll.  Being intentionally and constantly addressed with the wrong name and the wrong pronouns takes a toll.  Being in constant pain from stomach issues and struggling to remember that I am an individual with goals and fighting the constant undermining takes a toll.  The constant barrage of FOX news and teabaggering birthers takes a toll too.

      So I'm tired and worn down from it right now.  Yes, I will no doubt get over it. Yes, I will get better and get the fuck out of here, if it takes me getting three jobs to do it - but right now - I'm worn down and hurting and tired.

      And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

      by Mortifyd on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 12:18:31 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  ((mortifyd)) (6+ / 0-)

    I would definitely talk to the doctor about your sleeping issues, as well as how you're feeling. It may be that whatever they have you on isn't working they way they wanted it to work, or you're having some negative side effects.

    I'm glad you updated your info with SSI, yes, it can take them a long time and it is frustrating, but it's important for your future that you get it done. For now keep reminding yourself that this is temporary. I know it's very hard, especially living with an alcoholic and a mom who is trying to (from the sound of it), side line you at every step so you have to stay longer. But we knew going in that she wanted you there permanently. Your mom sounds like she lives in her own little world, denying the reality and wishes of those around her (and re-writing where she so desires). Perfect Fox News viewers, but hard on you.

    Can you go hang out at the library for a few hours every day perhaps? Do some reading there, go online, in quiet, clean, and peaceful environment? Even if you just start with reading magazines or anthologies which may be easier to follow at first. I know when I'm feeling out of focus I'll stick with anthologies or something I've read before because it doesn't matter if I can't focus for as long.

    It's good to hear from you, and it's perfectly ok to come on and vent. It doesn't in any way make you a bad person, everyone needs to vent from time to time.

    "Madness! Total and complete madness! This never would've happened if the humans hadn't started fighting one another!" Londo Mollari

    by FloridaSNMOM on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 06:44:49 AM PST

    •  I keep telling myself it's temporary (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      FloridaSNMOM, mathGuyNTulsa

      it's just been hard lately.

      I like the idea of going to the library - if I can get them to unblock my car a few hours a day that might be an option.

      Col CatLady controls everyone's movement by blocking the driveway.  He moves his truck when Mum goes to work and then blocks me back in - often using his drinking as an excuse not to move his truck again until she gets home.  I have to time the trips out or I'm trapped.

      Sometimes I go with Mum to drop off my Bubbe's groceries (her Mum) and do yardwork over there - but it very much depends on Mum's mood.  Since she is her Mum's caretaker as the oldest daughter - she's grooming me to do it for her as well - because faaaaaaamily.  Here all the gardening is done my Col CatLady, no one else is allowed to touch it.

      And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

      by Mortifyd on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 12:24:36 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  can you move your car, or be ready to go (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mortifyd

        when your mom leaves for work so you could get out then too? Or do the hours not work out?

        "Madness! Total and complete madness! This never would've happened if the humans hadn't started fighting one another!" Londo Mollari

        by FloridaSNMOM on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 04:40:48 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  some days I can, others not (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          FloridaSNMOM

          Fridays are not really possible, but other days I could try to move my car and just ignore the ranting - or just take off when she does.  She only works 3 hours a day during the week and has weekends off.

          Tuesday night is when my classes are - and it's a HUGE drama because I don't get home until 9pm - it messes up his passing out to get up for the cats at 3 am.  But I'm not leaving class early, and they get upset when I'm hyper after excercising - so they can just deal on Tuesdays.

          Otherwise I'm wasting the money paid for the class.  So they don't argue with that too much.

          And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

          by Mortifyd on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 04:55:57 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  I know you are worried that working will interfere (5+ / 0-)

    with the social security, but could you quietly volunteer somewhere that needs help with cleaning?  When you clean like that, it should make you feel satisfied and happy, instead of angry.  

    I'm suggesting that you take something you must do and make it work to your advantage.  You will make some friends and get some social contact that way.  

    Do you feel the same way about cleaning the outdoors? Other folks might call that gardening.  It is a great hobby and gets you out of the room.

    If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever. & http://www.dailykos.com/blog/Okiciyap

    by weck on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 07:55:51 AM PST

    •  I'm not sure I'm together enough (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      weck, FloridaSNMOM

      to consistently show up if I did volunteer someplace - and that has held me back.  I don't like to make commitments I am unable to keep.  The guilt creates a feedback spiral that just makes things worse and one of the reasons I'm here is to learn how to get past the constant beating myself up.

      I've offered to help with the yardwork - not qualified in Col Catlady's opinion.  Men do yardwork, not freaks.  Sometimes I am allowed to help at Bubbe's - depends on how my Mum feels about having company - she's pretty invested in her personal martyrdom to her own Mum.  We're a sick family and have been for generations.

      I think I would be okay with the cleaning if the mess making wasn't intentional.  The first few weeks I was here it wasn't like this.  It was just as she figured it out that my OCD could be used to her advantage that the intentional mess making began.

      And we sail and we sail and we never see land, just the rum in the bottle and a pipe in my hand...

      by Mortifyd on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 12:31:29 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  You could help with a small garden at an agency (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Mortifyd, FloridaSNMOM

        or school.  Someplace public.  The nice thing about gardening is that it isn't as time sensitive as other activities, like meals.  Anyway, just start small, offer to put in a few geraniums and then check back once a week to pinch off the faded blooms.  Water when needed. Try not to let what they are thinking about you interfere with your little steps back to the boat.  Good luck.

        If love could have saved you, you would have lived forever. & http://www.dailykos.com/blog/Okiciyap

        by weck on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 12:51:55 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  {{{Moryifyd}}} (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mortifyd, FloridaSNMOM

    Venting is healthy.  Vent away, especially here where no one can hurt you.  

    I've been reading your diaries for a while because you ARE sensitive, smart and so very courageous.  

    I know you don't want advice--and I apologize if my earlier post sounded like advice.  Your situation is compelling, and you've confronted it without compromising who you are and what you believe in.  That's admirable.  Its why I believe in you, and why I keep coming back to your diaries.

    Take care.  I hope things are better soon.

    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. -- Arthur C. Clarke

    by mathGuyNTulsa on Fri Mar 08, 2013 at 01:09:31 PM PST

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