2020-07-12 Insults and Injuries and Finding the Bright Spots In-between

I’ve been in a funk for a few days now. Just frustrated, you know with progress trying to improve my health being so slow. And feeling like garbage every day. And then to have this injury on my foot preventing me from walking was like.. like adding injury to insult.

It’s totally taken me out of my routine and work has, of course not helped. Then yesterday I was like, well, I gotta snap out and look for ways to re-engage with life. I made a plan to participate in as much of summer residency as I could. I’m not enrolled but it’s all virtual because of the pandemic. Some is pre-recorded video which I may not have access to but some of it is zoom. So I highlighted all the things I could tune in for on the schedule. Yesterday was the first full day of content.

I jumped on the Zoom for two lectures and one of the faculty reading events plus the “Library Pub” meet-up after the faculty reading. It was satisfying in the way that I felt I was doing something and was with a group I felt I belonged to. Seeing all the tiny zoom squares with other students and faculty was nice. Sad that it can’t be in person but, you know, just familiar enough that I finally felt the funk start to fade a bit.

Then I checked my email. In it was not 1 but 3 messages from the program coordinator reminding me that the content was for current students and faculty only. One message to remind me, which was very tactful. A second message that provided some reasoning behind it which was kind of snarky (and in my opinion, just a bunch of BS). And a third message confirming what events are “off limits” and what events are ok to attend. Completely unnecessary.

Apparently the graduating student events are within the legal limits. So I guess that’s going to have to be enough for this go round. But it still irks me, you know. I mean what freaking difference does it make to have one more person join a meeting??! It’s not like I am taking advantage to the point where I’m trying to participate in student-only content like workshops or mentor introduction sessions. It’s just tuning in to watch someone give a lecture or do a reading.

If the residency was in person, there would be alumni and / or other folks who pop in to the session and sit and watch. Yes, it’s in sort of a remote location, but people in the local Omaha metro area are close enough to visit for a day or a session.

I dunno. Maybe I’m taking advantage of the system, but it’s not doing anyone any harm. After reading the emails, I felt a little bummed. It’s like.. like it added insult to injury.

These layers of insult and injury are frustrating. I’m literally trying to walk right now and the treadmill and a set at 2.5, slower than my usual pace. I’m limping along trying to walk in a way that does not involve the big toe of my right foot. It’s both ridiculous and annoying. Whatever.


It’s Sunday and the house is sleeping-in. I’ve probably got at least another hour before people start to emerge from their rooms. I need to put my energy into something and think I might return to poetry submissions in the spirit of focusing on my “writing life” in leu of not being able to participate in Res the way I’d like.

Today Z and I are going shopping for dorm room essentials. It’s one of the things she’s been looking forward to for quite a while now.

She’s enthusiastic about living on her own and getting to decorate that space, however tiny. And getting to do that with her is another bright spot that I can’t dismiss. She’s been showing me pictures from the internet with other people’s dorm rooms and we’ve been discussing color combinations and all the ways to make the space functional.

I’m excited for her and really embracing the sliver of hope that it can all happen as planned. I’m trying to push away the thought that this experience will be stolen from her as well. The damn pandemic can’t last forever. She’s got a world of experiences ahead of her and I need to help her focus on the positive.

If I could only give myself the same pep-talk. Ha!

Anyway. I’ve successfully limped my way through about an hour of music and musing about life. As it often does, it has made me feel better. And that is good.

Time to get to that poetry submission thing I said that I was going to try this morning.

Peace and love,
~Miss SugarCookie

2020-07-11 Convenience Store Blues

This week was crazy busy. Mostly work, but there was also a string of other situations popping out that needed immediate attention.

I went on a walk with a friend I haven’t seen since January on Tuesday and had a flip-flop mishap that ended in a seriously gory scene. The bottom of my big toe got scalped and though I can still walk, it’s a struggle and had left me highly unmotivated about treadmill time.

I’m on the treadmill now and looking at myself in the gym mirror and can’t really remember the last time I showered. How does THAT happen. I look a mess. It matches the way I feel, kinda

I know I have to take the decommission of the benzodiazepines slow, but I’m loosing patience and just kinda just want to be over it. I’ve got this shitty feeling every damn day. I’m on half mg of lorazepam now. It’s a quarter of a full pill and still I’m feeling like crap most nights. I worry I’ll still feel like this even after I’m off it. What then??!

I might be grumpy this AM because I should be at residency with my MFA peeps and I’m not. The stupid pandemic is preventing life from going according to plan and I’m just exhausted by it emotionally.

Workshops, lectures, readings. This was supposed to be my graduating residency and Since it’s all virtual I opted for plan b which was to defer to Winter. Now I feel I’m missing out. Hmmmmph!

There’s so much going on I’m thinking about but my motivation to walk and write is just not there. Hopefully I’ll get some mo-jo back soon.

Peace and Love,
~Miss SugarCookie

2020-07-06 Not Ready for Monday

I’ve had a lovely string of satisfying days, despite the interruption of so many aggressive firework fiends on the loose.

I really needed the holiday weekend to do for myself and forget about work and just enjoy life as a wife.

We tried for a bike ride on the 4th but it was too hot and though it was great to be alone together and get some fresh air and sunshine, the cool comfort of our living room was much more enticing. We were only out on the trail for an hour.

We ended up watching some shows—A few episodes of Dark season three, one episode of a show called unsolved mysteries (I think), and an episode of Star Trek discovery. I also worked on revising some poems with the hope of submitting something. I almost reached the finish line with that. Hopefully I won’t lose my motivation today before I pull done triggers.

We also lit off a handful of fireworks and I was reminded, once again, one of the reasons I hate the holiday. All the constant explosions and noise and thick smoke contesting the air. The only escape is possibly being out of the city. It’s really ridiculous.

I think that got to me. You know.. all of it and I ended up feeling sick with a headache on Saturday night. Laying in bed at 11:40pm, not able to get relief or fall asleep, the fireworks were still going off. It was awful. Sunday was a nice recovery.

My kids come home today and it’s back to business as usual. It’s going to be a super busy work week and I hope I’ve had enough restoration to face that.

I’m actually not feeling inclined to keep walking or trying to think of what to write about this morning. I mean I feel like I have lots to talk about, but nothing feels pressing. Maybe that’s ok.

It’s probably because I’m not feeling like walking either. The advantage of coming down off of the sleep aid medication is that I won’t have any side effects anymore, but the flipside of that coin is that my sleep issues have resurfaced and I have started waking up early and not being able to go back to sleep.

That struggle is real.

However, Monday is rolling and ready or not and I just need to get on it and see where it goes.

Peace,
~Miss SugarCookie

2020-07-04 Cheers to New Poetry and Spending Quality Time this 4th of July 🌟

I’m leading with the poem I wrote yesterday instead of including it as an afterthought at the end. The tag line? “Look Ma, it’s a Love Poem!!”

Driving Toward Sunset on July 2nd

Yesterday was a pretty good day. I had two good virtual catch up sessions with friends, I attended a poetry workshop where I learned something and wrote a poem, and also managed to not do a lot of work and focus on doing things that made me feel satisfied.

And I took a shower.. super bonus plan!!

Of the aforementioned things I would say that the most noteworthy was the poem. I can count on one hand the number of poems I’ve written since February. It was so satisfying to not only write it, but immediately apply what I learned in the workshop to find the right form.

The workshop was with Paul Tram and it was one of the more educational workshops I’ve attended. Many have great topics and prompts, but we actually evaluated a poem and he revealed all it had to offer. We then took that formula and wrote our own.

Even more noteworthy than that was the fact that I wrote a love poem!! I mean I’ve written hundreds of poems but love poems are rare among them. For whatever reason, being in love or loving someone does not inspire words within me typically. I’m more inclined to write about life when my heart is breaking, when I’m down and struggling (except in a pandemic when I apparently can’t put more than two stanzas together).

I’m extremely grateful for the workshop and the day off and.. not to be dismissed.. my love who has been on my mind quite a bit tough he’s only been “out of town” for about 36 hours. We’re planning to go on a bike ride today.

Now I’ve got quite a backstory about my history with 4th of July—too much to go into detail here, But I will say I’ve had my share of ups and downs and steps backwards and forwards in the last 10 to 12 years. I’m really looking forward to establishing new traditions and re-shaping old ones.

The poem probably says it best, though.

I’m going to close with that today. I was up early and am feeling hungry and ready to dive into my chores so the house is in good order for Jim’s return and for the activities we have planned for the day.

Wishing all a safe and satisfying day.
Thanks for reading,
~Miss SugarCookie

2020-07-03 Yes, Person I’ve Never Met, I’m Judging You 😷

I almost wrote this post a few weeks ago after I had to make a trip to the pool supply store to get out pool water tested to make sure the chemicals were safe and balanced for swimming.

Most of the trips I make outside the house are to get groceries or pick up prescriptions. The occasional quick trip into the hardware store, putting my mask on like a good human each time (though the pharmacy has a drive through so that’s nice).

It’s difficult not to observe the other humans and their choices. I’m naturally a pretty judgmental person. In a non-pandemic world, I would be scanning the crowds and throwing side eyes at people’s choices of clothing and hairstyle. I know, I know, “do not judge, lest you be judged”, but I’m only human. Now with the pandemic, all bets are off.

I don’t care if you’re wearing your pajamas or slippers in the grocery store, but if you’re not wearing a mask. I’m judging you. I can’t escape it.

And as a person who does make these regular trips outside of my household, I can’t help but detect trends and have my finger on the pulse of the attitude of the people. It’s definitely shifted in the last month with the easing of restrictions.

A month ago, almost everyone at the grocery store was wearing a mask and now it’s about 50/50. I haven’t been to the hardware store in a while, but the last time I went masks were still required. However I’ve also noticed a rise in people not wearing masks correctly. It doesn’t do anyone any good to wear a mask over your mouth when your nose is still hanging out. It defeats the purpose, why wear a mask at all? Good grief!

Circling back to the pool store, at the time everyone in the grocery store was wearing a mask. So when I put my mask on and went into the pool store I was shocked to find that none of the customers nor the employees were wearing masks. I felt like I was walking into a bizarro world where the pandemic did not exist. What the hell?!

My next over-arching thought was that all these people who have pools are too pretentious or assuming and thinking that they are above wearing a mask for some reason. No, the fact that you have a pool at your house does not eliminate the possibility that you’re going to get the virus. Just because you have a business with a pool or a house with a pool and probably have money does not mean that you are not also vulnerable. I was actually disgusted by that thought process. And there I was among them.

Now I’m not saying I’ve made the best choices all along either. I did have a meet up with friends a few weeks ago where we were outside most of the time and 6 feet apart most of the time and not wearing our masks. Again, I am only human too.

Yesterday, I had the need to go to a few different stores for items for the Fourth of July and was once again irritated by the fact that almost no one was wearing a mask. I was wearing mine, but in the minority. I also happen to drive by several businesses with glass fronts and saw lots of tables full of people inside enjoying a meal or a drink. Not a lot of social distancing going on there.

Every single day this week the news has been full of the fact that positive cases are on the rise, hospitalizations are on the rise, resources are beginning to get scarce again, especially in a few of the more popular and densely populated states. California Florida Texas… All hotbeds of activity for this virus.

My daughters high school graduation was canceled and rescheduled three times. And the latest date that has been on the calendar for a few weeks now is August 2. If the trend continues that will be called off completely. A week after that she supposed to move into her dorm room at college. How on earth can those things happen if People keep ignoring the fact that the virus is still spreading and will likely not be contained until there’s an approved vaccination that’s widely available.

One last note on this… I heard a bit of a narrative on the news this morning that asked the question, “how would all of this be different if you could actually see the virus? What if there were outward physical symptoms that you could see or that the virus was big enough that you could detect when it was exiting someone’s body through their breath and falling to the ground?”

I think about this and imagine little grey particles with tufts of red fuzz floating in the air and slowly dropping to the ground. I imagine seeing someone standing in the grocery store, contemplating what type of hamburger buns to buy with the covid emerging out their mouth with their every breath and landing on those plastic wrappers. They pick one and put it in their cart and then change their mind and put it back. The packages in the store are covered in virus until the grey and red spots start to fade away.

People would be wearing masks, I am sure of it. They would be more inclined to because the inherent risk of not wearing one would be more obvious. I mean, almost everyone who gets into a car puts their seatbelt on. 1.) We have seen what has happened when you don’t wear a seatbelt, either in video or in real life. 2.) in many, many states it’s the law.

So why can’t we just enforce it with the law? Law enforcement is to serve and protect. I know that there’s been a lot of negative press about the police lately and for good reason, but law enforcement is still necessary and it might help if we had some local laws that people had to abide by or suffer some penalty. At the very least, business that just followed the rules and also enforced the wearing of masks. Again, just my opinion.

And as a collective group, we are only as good as our lowest common denominator. But people don’t seem to care and there appears to be a lot of low denominators out there. Yeah.. I’m looking at you complete stranger in the checkout line in front of me at the Whole Foods. The life you save by wearing a mask could be your own, or your moms, or someones child. Don’t be that asymptomatic virus shedder galavanting around town without a mask!! Just don’t.

Yes, I know this post is very preachy and very judge-y. My opinions are my own of course. But I just wish that people would realize that their choice not to wear a mask affects more than just themselves.

OK, that’s probably enough of a frustrated-human-sugar-cookie rant for one day. But I had to vent for a minute and that’s kinda what this blog is for (sometimes).

Enjoy your holiday. Peace Out,
~Miss SugarCookie

2020-07-02 Between last night and today 🌙 … ☀️

Last night, as I neared the end of my day, my brain was full of all kinds of things to say. I felt happy and satisfied and looking forward to today and this holiday weekend and the rest of this summer. I should have gotten out my notebook and put pen to paper. I should have tried to capture the fine details of those moments. I didn’t.

Instead, I opted to just cruise through my evening enjoying the feeling. I opted to take a drive with Jim and watch a show and go to bed early.

And today I can’t remember what I was thinking. Whatever it was has dissolved into the abyss. I’m tired from not sleeping well and no longer excited about the day. My list already seems too long and unmanageable. I’ve got all day to get stuff done but just don’t want to do any of it.

Something happened between last night and today and isn’t that strange? Probably not.

My kids are at their Dad’s for the holiday and Jim is taking his boys camping for a few days too. So I’m going to be solo most of the next 48 hours. Last night I was inspired by the prospect of doing my own thing for a couple of days. And today, I’m already feeling kinda alone.

Maybe that’s the cause of my mood shift? Or maybe it’s the realization that even though I’m alone, I still have a ton of things to get done and will not really even have a choice of what to do.

It could also be this string of depressing songs that are coming up in my iPhone shuffle this morning. 🤷‍♀️

Life is strange and mysterious. And, that’s just about all I have to say about things today.

Peace,
~Miss SugarCookie

2020-07-01 Change is Sometimes Neither Fast Nor Easy

About 16 days ago I decided I had enough of feeling shitty every freaking day and set out on a mission to figure it out and turn things around. i decided the first step was to do a substance cleanse and get my body free of chemicals that alter my mood, help me sleep or calm my anxiety. I was all-in and knew it was what needed to happen.

I vowed that I would cut that shit out for 15 days and then re-evaluate to see how I was feeling and add other mods into my routine. Give myself an uptick in good behaviors like hydration and eating more fruits and veg. But I found out pretty quickly that i couldn’t just make a declaration and it would magically come to pass.

Day 2 I felt like garbage and by day 3 I was throwing my hands up in the air in despair. I honestly didn’t know I was suffering withdrawal until I saw a physician and heard his assessment. That day was one of the worst I’ve ever had. And the relief I felt when I gave in and took a Xanax and went back to bed was all the proof I needed that he was right.

So instead of cold turkey, I’m taking it slow and reducing my dose in small increments. The prescribed plan is like 12 weeks but I’ve been working the numbers and charting my dose and symptoms and think I can do it it 8. That’s still a lot longer than the 2 weeks I was originally hoping for.

I’ve also not been able to cut out caffeine. But I’ve been charting my headaches too and have minimized my daily intake quite a bit. Like I said, it’s been about 16 days since I stomped my foot and declared these changes, and I have successfully reduced the caffeine to about 1 cup of coffee a day. It feels like a win to me.

Of course the third part of my substance trifecta was alcohol. I haven’t had a sip since June 13. It’s been the easiest part of my plan by far. I think the first time I really missed it was when I returned from Colorado and Jim suggested we have a few drinks while I fill him in on the details of my trip. I declined (but still spent a fair bit of talking about everything Z and I saw and did).

Despite the change-up In the master plan and slowing some things down considerably, I can still feel an improvement in my health. I feel better waking up in the morning and am not dreading the day like I was. I’m starting to be excited again about the things going on in my life instead of feeling so burdened by responsibility.

And I am actually sleeping better even though I’m not taking as much of the Lorazepam as I was. That’s freaking incredible. I’m just now rolling into week 3 of my 8 week plan but already looking forward to the day when I’m done-done with that shit!

All of this validates that change is sometimes neither fast or easy. But it’s always good to have goals and measures so you can keep track of how it’s going.

Also not to be dismissed is the need for a llama in the story. Something interesting, something to look forward to, something that’s providing internal satisfaction.. feeding the soul.

The llama in my “Take Back the City Tour” was the road trip I took with my daughter. It was very restorative to disconnect from work and get a change in scenery for a few days. The mental health variable in the grand equation of overall health is so important. Everything is connected!

Today is the first day of the second half of 2020. We are half a year into what will probably go down in history as one of the most trying years of the century. No human can escape the impact of the pandemic. No person in America is isolated from events that are changing the climate of our country.. politically, socially, economically.

There too, change is painful and a struggle. It’s a large scale example of what neither fast nor easy looks like. But as I have hope that I can find peace and health for myself, so too do I have hope that we as a society can take steps toward positive change.

I don’t have any answers but I know that “cold turkey” is not the Way.

I digress. I’m officially calling today the end of my “Tour” and will return now, somewhat, to my regularly scheduled programming. I’ll still be on the lookout for the next Llama or Ostrich. Everyone should make time for that!

Peace and Love,
~Miss SugarCookie

2020-07-01 Change is Sometimes Neither Fast Nor Easy

About 16 days ago I decided I had enough of feeling shitty every freaking day and set out on a mission to figure it out and turn things around. i decided the first step was to do a substance cleanse and get my body free of chemicals that alter my mood, help me sleep or calm my anxiety. I was all-in and knew it was what needed to happen.

I vowed that I would cut that shit out for 15 days and then re-evaluate to see how I was feeling and add other mods into my routine. Give myself an uptick in good behaviors like hydration and eating more fruits and veg. But I found out pretty quickly that i couldn’t just make a declaration and it would magically come to pass.

Day 2 I felt like garbage and by day 3 I was throwing my hands up in the air in despair. I honestly didn’t know I was suffering withdrawal until I saw a physician and heard his assessment. That day was one of the worst I’ve ever had. And the relief I felt when I gave in and took a Xanax and went back to bed was all the proof I needed that he was right.

So instead of cold turkey, I’m taking it slow and reducing my dose in small increments. The prescribed plan is like 12 weeks but I’ve been working the numbers and charting my dose and symptoms and think I can do it it 8. That’s still a lot longer than the 2 weeks I was originally hoping for.

I’ve also not been able to cut out caffeine. But I’ve been charting my headaches too and have minimized my daily intake quite a bit. Like I said, it’s been about 16 days since I stomped my foot and declared these changes, and I have successfully reduced the caffeine to about 1 cup of coffee a day. It feels like a win to me.

Of course the third part of my substance trifecta was alcohol. I haven’t had a sip since June 13. It’s been the easiest part of my plan by far. I think the first time I really missed it was when I returned from Colorado and Jim suggested we have a few drinks while I fill him in on the details of my trip. I declined (but still spent a fair bit of talking about everything Z and I saw and did).

Despite the change-up In the master plan and slowing some things down considerably, I can still feel an improvement in my health. I feel better waking up in the morning and am not dreading the day like I was. I’m starting to be excited again about the things going on in my life instead of feeling so burdened by responsibility.

And I am actually sleeping better even though I’m not taking as much of the Lorazepam as I was. That’s freaking incredible. I’m just now rolling into week 3 of my 8 week plan but already looking forward to the day when I’m done-done with that shit!

All of this validates that change is sometimes neither fast or easy. But it’s always good to have goals and measures so you can keep track of how it’s going.

Also not to be dismissed is the need for a llama in the story. Something interesting, something to look forward to, something that’s providing internal satisfaction.. feeding the soul.

The llama in my “Take Back the City Tour” was the road trip I took with my daughter. It was very restorative to disconnect from work and get a change in scenery for a few days. The mental health variable in the grand equation of overall health is so important. Everything is connected!

Today is the first day of the second half of 2020. We are half a year into what will probably go down in history as one of the most trying years of the century. No human can escape the impact of the pandemic. No person in America is isolated from events that are changing the climate of our country.. politically, socially, economically.

There too, change is painful and a struggle. It’s a large scale example of what neither fast nor easy looks like. But as I have hope that I can find peace and health for myself, so too do I have hope that we as a society can take steps toward positive change.

I don’t have any answers but I know that “cold turkey” is not the Way.

I digress. I’m officially calling today the end of my “Tour” and will return now, somewhat, to my regularly scheduled programming. I’ll still be on the lookout for the next Llama or Ostrich. Everyone should make time for that!

Peace and Love,
~Miss SugarCookie

2020-06-30 Take Back the City Tour: Day 15 Colorado Wrap Up

We arrived home from our Colorado road trip late afternoon Sunday. It’s now Tuesday. That’s what happens. And.. if I don’t take the time To reflect reflected on our trip, it will start to slip away…

At the very least, I’d like to capture the highlights so I don’t forget them. Pictures are worth a thousand words, as they say, so maybe that’s the way….

Day 1 (Wednesday): We get one the road about 2PM and drive straight through to Denver with just a few stops for restrooms, gas, food AND a stop in Kearny to visit my friend Tre who I haven’t seen since the wedding. That was definitely my highlight of the day. Z was so grumpy the whole way, which is not something I’m typically want to remember, but the emotions we both had were part of the overall experience.

We arrived in Denver at about 11 and after 2 failed stops at gas stations (hunting for Ben and Jerry’s) we gave up and went to my sisters apartment. We chatted briefly and then crashed out in her spare bedroom.

Day 2 (Thursday): We had take out brunch in the park with my sister before she had to go to work. Z was still tired and grumpy after that so I let her go back to sleep while I caught up on emails on the couch with the two cats.

When we finally got moving we drove south to Colorado Springs where we had reservations to stay the night at Glen Eyrie Castle. We explored the castle and the grounds and then headed out to resume our quest for Ben and Jerry’s and visit Cheyenne canyon.

The quest took us on a bit of a detour and we ended up at the great Wolf Lodge which presumably has a Ben & Jerry’s inside but it was closed because of the pandemic. It took two more stops but we finally found the coveted ice cream darling daughter was craving at a 7-Eleven. Huzzah!! She had her ice cream while we drove to Cheyenne canyon and proceeded to explore that whole area. By car.

Most of the stops were too packed with people and, being weary about social distancing, we opted to stay in the car most of the way at the canyon. We finally got out at the top and walked on a dirt road along the Ridgeline.

After that we made our way back to the Castle for the evening. It was great to take a shower and just relax and chat. Z did her own thing and I spent time mostly researching activities for us to do. Not sure what time I fell asleep.

Day 3 (Friday): We had a lazy morning once again and didn’t get moving until about eleven. That’s when we checked out and made our way to the Academy Riding Stables where we embarked on a 2 hour horseback ride. It was a tour up and around the garden of the gods and as hot as it was, it was a great choice. I would not have wanted to hike through there on foot.

Riding the horses was fun (a favorite activity of my Z) and it helped us keep our distance from the people. We were at the back of the line and several times hung way back so we could engage the horses to trot and catch up. It was a good little refresher, but boy were we both sore that night!

After that we drove through Manatu Springs and elected not to get out of the car (almost no one wearing masks) and also skipped the drive up Pikes peak (we have both been up to the top on previous trips) and were sort of just driving around looking for a good cell signal so we could figure out what to do.

Just about that time a healthy storm started to roll in and so we drove back to Colorado Springs proper and got a room at a Holiday Inn express. I would say we waited out the storm there, but we did get hungry for dinner so we ventured out in the pouring rain in search of fast food.

There is no Del taco in Omaha so I jumped at the chance to get that fix and my pudding pie had one of her favorites—raising canes (3 finger combo with extra crispy fries, toast buttered on both sides, and a Dr Pepper with light ice (she’s so high maintenance!) 😜

We had a pretty chill evening in the hotel and watched a B movie from the bed. Then she did her own thing again while I again researched activities for us to do the next day. Once I had a solid plan, I crashed out. Not sure how long she was awake after that but she sure likes to stay up late and sleep in.

Day 4 (Saturday): Surprise, surprise.. we get a late checkout again! 😏 After packing everything into the car AGAIN, we drove another hour south west to hit the Royal Gorge. Despite the pandemic the place was packed! Again, it felt like the wild Wild West with very few people wearing masks, and it was quite annoying how disrespectful people were getting too close in the queue to get inside the park.

The bridge is super cool and it was crazy windy. We struggled to get good pictures because the hair situation was just bonkers. I think it was a combination of factors but most the attractions were closed. No gondola ride, no theatre, no sky-coaster (though we did see that run at least once while we were up at the top of the hill on the opposite side of the bridge.

It actually worked out perfectly because we had just enough time to explore around before jumping back in the car to hit our scheduled Zip-line adventure.

It was 9 lines through the Colorado high desert outside of Canyon City. A really great hike and the Zip-lining was super fun. It’s the kind of thing Z is really into. She likes thrill rides. She asked me at one point if I would go skydiving with her. Uhhhhh, “maybe” I said and then dropped that topic like a hot potato.

After the zip line we were both super hungry and about an hour plus away from real civilization. I mean there were places to eat in canyon city but again, it did not look like they had any rules in place for protecting customers so we opted to drive back to Colorado city and get food from A Texas roadhouse.

My original plan was to drive home on Saturday but it was super late in the day so we just had to plan to go as far as we could and then stop again one more night. The way things work out, Sterling was not far enough for us and Ogallala had no rooms at my preferred hotel. So we ended up driving all the way to North Platte and arrived there around 2 AM. Yikes!

Day 5 (Sunday): waking up in North Platte was actually nice, knowing that we only had about four hours to get home. We drove most of the way through but took a detour in Lincoln so we could drive around University of Nebraska campus where Z it’s going to be a freshman in the fall. She wanted to see where all the dorm rooms were and get a first look at what’s in her future.

From there, home is only about 45 minutes away. Which is really good for so many reasons.

Arriving back home was a relief! It was a good trip but, you know, it always feels great to be in your own space again and sleep in your own bed (and spend time with those you have been missing while away).

I think the time together was super valuable and the time away was great for our mental health, even if I’m paying the price now trying to catch up on work (not to mention the inherent risks in so much exposure outside the home).

Wowza! That was a long session on the treadmill. I’m already at 10k steps today!! Definitely enough for now.

What a way to End June 2020!
~Miss SugarCookie

2020-06-27 Take Back the City Tour: Day 🤷‍♀️ Health Check

Somewhere along the way I’ve gotten messed up on what day it is. That happens when you miss accounting some days and double up on others. What I have been keeping track of on my handy-dandy paper calendar is the following:

  • What my Lorazepam dose is
  • What week it is in my plan to come down off that evil drug
  • How much caffeine I’m having
  • What time my nasty head symptoms present each day
  • And if I wake with a headache

As always, my sleep and my steps get recorded by my FitBit but I’m not watching that too closely for any connections. Perhaps I should, given the inherent connections, but I’m just focusing on how I feel, mind and body, and the chemicals I’m ingesting.

The abstinence from alcohol has been easy-peasy. I don’t really miss it. I think that when I’m done with this initial cleanse, I can just keep that up, except for the occasional happy hour. I’m also wearing my reading glasses more reliably than I was before and that’s probably helping too.

My original plan was to go for 15 days cutting the benzodiazepines, caffeine, and alcohol. My plan was thwarted on like day or 3 when I experienced a crash from withdrawal. At that point i saw a physician, had some tests, and got put on a better plan. Now it’s been another week and a few days and I’m following the prescribed plan as best as I can.

Even with the change in plans, I’m already feeling a ton better than I was two weeks ago. I’d go so far as to say I’m rediscovering what healthy feels like. I’ve been here before so I know what healthy feels like.

The strange thing is, I don’t know when I lost it (the healthy feeling) or why. In 2017 I was a wreck and had to take drastic action to put myself right again. So when did it slip out of my grasp again?

I mean, I’m in a great relationship. My kids are doing well, I get regular exercise and do several things for myself to feed my need for interaction and to flex the creative part of my brain.

Was it just too much change too fast? Moving, marriage, integration of households? Is it my job.. Too much stress? Could it be the pandemic and all the chaos and uncertainty in the world? Could it be politics and the divided shambles America has become? The constant dose of insanity and stupidity from our president. Can we get a step down plan for that hot mess too?

And how is it that in 2020, cops are still killing black people? And that the vicious cycle only perpetuates itself. And then here we are again, nearing the end of June and the daily news is waxing once again with the pandemic and politics. These serious and impactful events that shape our lives get swept under other news du-jour.

Sometimes I say everything is connected. Most of the time I’m talking about internally. Like the body and mind and soul. But it’s bigger than me. It’s all the external stimulus too. The ecosystem of the earth, the economy of the world, social and political constructs of civilization. It’s everything from the dwindling numbers of honeybees and the escalating conflicts between north and South Korea.

It’s a person making a choice to not to wear a mask in public.

It’s a parent who doesn’t teach their child about what’s right and wrong, or talk to them about current events, or lay down the law when they make mistakes. Or worse yet, teach them through their bad behaviors that lack compassion and sensibility. It’s kinda hard to witness. It’s also hard to hold inside and hold my tongue. But it’s complicated.

I’m not perfect and I’ve made mistakes and part of my angst, which I am sure contributes to my health, is the worry that I’m not doing all I should be.

This is probably enough wandering for one Saturday. I’ve got my sweet daughter sleeping in a room three floors above me in this hotel in the middle of Colorado and it’s time to make my words meet my own actions. We’ve got a fairly solid plan for today and my goal is to satisfy the thrill seeker inside her. So it’s off to the Royal Gorge we go!

Until Next Time,
~Miss SugarCookie