Mid-week check-in

Clever Manka, · Categories: Check-In

This is the weekly post for those of us who are traversing together this hellscape called Personal Growth. Brag about this week’s accomplishments, ask for support, talk about what worked, what didn’t. Tell us how things are going for you.


45 Responses to “Mid-week check-in”

  1. Frumiosa says:

    Two project updates:
    1) Essay collection I'm editing: Had a call with my agent last week after sending him my draft proposal. It didn't go so well – he'd been jazzed about the book initially but now is unsure how he'll sell it. I wrote a follow-up email making the case for the book's potential market and sales strategy, and haven't heard back. So that's hella frustrating, will probably have to get a new agent.

    2) Long road to one day maybe being a prison chaplain: Got set up with a prison pen pal, a woman in a federal prison in Alabama. I'm excited to correspond with her and learn all about her life – now I just need to figure out what the hell to write in my first letter.

    • CleverManka says:

      That stinks. I hope you can resolve the thing with your agent. I know just enough about the publishing world to know how important (and stressful and exhausting) that is.

    • littleinfinity says:

      First letter to anyone is tricky! I have a friend who spent a few years in prison, and we used to write letters back and forth all the time. I remember he really enjoyed hearing about just everyday life in the outside world. Maybe that has changed a bit now with media and technology (this was 2002-2009), but while he was always happy to fill me in on what he was up to, he really craved that connection with the "real world". Also, stickers or drawings are a cheap form of art/ visual pleasure that can easily be included in letters and won't get stolen or confiscated. Same for pretty paper, etc.

  2. CleverManka says:

    I didn't make it to Pilates on Monday and I cried about it. I'm probably not going to make it to Thursday's barre class. I'm using up 8 of my 12 hours of sick leave left today. I don't have an essay ready for next week (and will probably have to bump a guest post up a week because of that–luckily I have a guest post to bump).

    <img src="http://ic.pics.livejournal.com/clevermanka/1047329/319269/319269_original.gif"&gt;

  3. ladyj1131 says:

    I have been dating someone for around 4 months, but for the last couple weeks things have been not great. We'd get into arguments about stupid little things, my feelings were fading, but I was hoping things would get better; he's a great person. Last night he asked me to go on vacation with him, and I had a panic attack and broke up with him. Which I'm 99% sure is the right thing to go, I don't think our relationship is going to progress much further, but it took both of us by surprise and now I am sad and exhausted.

  4. FriendOfDaja says:

    Hi guys, hope things are going well for you!! My big accomplishment this week was getting the last of my boxes from my parents' garage and driving them cross country to my apartment. Of course, now I have another room's worth of stuff to put in my already filled room….so that's next week's challenge.

    Can I ask for advice, a la Toast OT? I've been thinking about getting set up with a therapist for a while, because I feel like there's some kind of anxiety/depression/ADHD kind of thing that I should get checked out.
    It's kind of scary, because my family doesn't talk about mental health care much, and I manage pretty well in my day-to-day. My question is, how do I get set up with someone (or even begin the process), and how do I pose my concerns without saying "I relate really hard to lots of things I read online, that's why I'm here?"

    • Frumiosa says:

      Finding a therapist is an annoying process, especially for someone with issues that require a therapist! Ironic. Do you have health insurance? If so, go to your insurance's website, they should have a "Find a Doctor" section, so you can find out who is in your network. Then it's kind of a crapshoot, based on your needs – proximity, specializations, gender, etc. I would narrow it down to three, call them (I know, ugh!), and get the next available appointment. Don't worry about providing an in-depth description of what's going on with you initially, they'll guide you through it – that's their job. The hard part is if you don't click with the first person, then it's back to the drawing board. But don't give up – once you find the right therapist it's totally worth it. Also, if health insurance (i.e. cost) isn't a determining factor, you can just go to findatherapist.com, which makes it easy to find someone, but many of them don't take insurance. Anyway. Hope that helps.

      • FriendOfDaja says:

        That helps a lot! I'm saving your comment for future reference; thank you 🙂

        I'm lucky to have health insurance, as well as a dedicated queer-friendly health center nearby. Hopefully that streamlines the process a bit!

  5. lucyish says:

    I was having a terrible day yesterday and crying at work about being overwhelmed with school stuff, and so I posted to facebook asking for cheerleading and validation that juggling part-time school and full-time work is difficult and it's not just that I suck, and oh, dear internet friends, my non-internet friends gave me so much cheerleading and so much validation. I often get stuck in this feeling that I am alone and have no support etc etc etc but it turns out that whenever I ask for help, people come through for me.

    So I am feeling grateful and supported, and actually kind of impressed with myself for having such good friends.

  6. Doc_Paradise says:

    I had a good weekend and succeeded at buying clothing. I also treated myself to a few lovely treats (dishes and hot sauces). I now own a Punisher shirt because I need t-shirts that say: "don't fuck with me".

    I got some health news that, on the surface looked scary and bad, but I dug into what it might mean and came up with a list of things I can try that might help immediately (and one is). I'm actually feeling optimistic because of the news.

  7. Heathered says:

    Everything seems to be changing faster than I can process lately, but largely for the better. Last Saturday a local karate studio offered a free self-defense class to our tiny LGBTQ community for Pride weekend. I was terrified on every level because I can't yell loud without getting laryngitis, but I went and got to spar with a guy and a bunch of heavy bags and it was completely supportive and helpful, and now I feel a little dumb for waiting so long, but I'm excited to learn more and adapt it to my body type and abilities. tl;dr: Haiii-YA!

  8. littleinfinity says:

    I'm currently writing my annual self-evaluation for work, and oh man do I hate it so much. The most. It's like writing a resume for a job I already have. It forces me to overly brag about myself while simultaneously reflecting on all the ways in which I didn't live up to my own expectations over the last year. It is the bane of my tiny existence this week.

    Other than that, though, everything is pretty good. Trying to prioritize exercise more, and thinking about ideas for a book I might someday-maybe-potentially consider writing???

  9. LaxMom says:

    oh, I would like to put a positive here, but my good friend moved far away forever today and I'm sad. Also the kids came back from their dad's, and it's bad. The teen had a huge explosion that resulted in my losing my cool and telling him to go back to his dad's and live there if that's how he's going to talk to me (ragey swearing and really disrespectful screaming). Which in hindsight I should have expected, he always has a hard time with re-entry. But now I"m juggling more psych appointments for him, trying to figure out how I'm going to repair things with him after kicking him out, and wishing he didn't have stockholm syndrome so badly, and that his counselors understood more, because…..

    his sister came back with a broken hand from her dad's house. Yes, last week, yes, her dad said, "oh, it's fine". This is the 4th broken bone he's ignored. I have to make some kind of move to keep her safe and I can't without further alienating the kid because blowback and "attacking dad". So I'm also juggling doctor appointments and orthopedist appointments and missing my counseling, which I really need, to get broken bones fixed…and this is really it, this is when I have to get a lawyer and get custody revoked, and I'm already not getting enough of my research done, and crying all the time. I have to, though. Ignoring a broken bone 2 months after running over her foot? not ok.

    • Fancy_Pants says:

      You've somehow managed to keep breathing through all of that mess, so that counts as a huge positive. I've been reading your posts for awhile and god, that sounds so, so tough. Good luck to you and your kids <3

    • vladazhael says:

      Wow, that's… a lot. But Fancy_Pants has it right – you are breathing, you are moving forward, you are MIGHTY. It sounds like you already know what you need to do, and I wish you the best of luck and the peak of strength in doing it.

    • kayjayoh_ says:


    • Crivens_the_hag says:

      Infinite toast hugs for you. And righteous fury on your behalf.

    • LaxMom says:

      I survived yet another psych appointment and the orthopedist. I don't know what they would have done if it hadn't been almost two weeks since the break, but at this point they are just buddy taping it. Teen boy decided on his own he wants to try different meds.
      I took a deep breath and send an email to my pediatrician, who knows all the backstory. I told him I was stuck between keep teen boy whole (and alive) and protecting girl and asked him for advice. Tomorrow I see boy's counselor (not the psychiatrist). I just wish I could talk to mine.

    • CleverManka says:

      This is the place where you don't have to be positive about all the shit in your life, so NO WORRIES, bb. I hope you catch a break sooooooon.

  10. dancingcorvid says:

    I am acting, for the first time since I was 16, (which was a solid 40 years ago, thankyouverymuch) on an actual stage. I get to play Smee in Peter Pan, as interpreted by Paintbox Theater which is theater for kids. It is hilarious, and slightly nervewracking and I am constantly second-guessing myslef, but I am also incredibly amused by the process and by my fellow actors (all five of us – a highly streamlined production – Tink is played by a kid from the audience, shepherded across the stage by our [singular] stagehand, voiced with wind chimes)

    aside from that I am far far too busy and overwhelmed by everything else

    I haven't made any art for two months

    I am feeling totally out of control.

  11. vladazhael says:

    I was productive enough at work yesterday that I missed this thread, so… I guess that's a thing? I was busy digging into the educational stuff involved in this career I fell bass-ackwards into (and am somewhat ambivalent about, because *whine* I wanna be creative), because my boss finally told me to set a real goal date for certification (fair, since the company is footing the bill), and it's actually a lot more engaging when I'm actively going through the lessons and memorizing terminology and such. Maybe that's my trivia-focused brain wiring more than actual interest in all this Modern Business World stuff, but I'll take what I can get if it keeps me moving forward.

    After all, on top of needing to be able to offer my parents medical financial support should that flailing orange goon and his ilk gain enough power to successfully dismantle Obamacare, I am technically an Independent Single Woman and must be prepared to fully and sustainably Fend For Myself… but damn, does this breakup lack conviction! We are still hanging out all the time, still living together with no plans to change that, and still sometimes enjoying the down and dirty benefits of being consenting adults who are mutually attracted to each other. At this point it's less of a split and more of a paradigm shift (especially given that only a handful of people even know about it), which is changing and evolving from day to day, but with a whole lot of honest and open communication and positive change and support and acknowledgement of reluctance to let everything go, so… I dunno, it's pretty cool. Personal growth points for both of us, and I hope whatever this is, it keeps going so unexpectedly well. *fingers crossed, knock on wood, hopefully typing positive things will not curse them*

  12. kayjayoh_ says:

    A day late but:
    1. I have obtained (but not yet call) the number of a convenient local therapist who takes my insurance and is accepting new patients.
    2. I have obtained (but not yet contacts) a list of lawyers on my company's free will writing service who also have evening and weekend availability.
    3. I had a phone interview for one next level job in a new department and an in-person interview for a similar job in yet another department.
    4. Finally obtained a TV (used from a fellow Toastie who is moving out of town) and ordered a real damn couch, so that we can sit in the living room to watch things, rather than huddle around one of our computers in the office. Because no.

  13. Onymous says:

    I was doing really good this weekend, capped off by giving blood on Monday. Then Tuesday/Wednesday were okay, until my counselor, I'm sure thinking something was leaking, told me my shirt was wet as I was leaving the session. It was of course just me being a sweaty bastard and now I've spent the last 20 hours listing and re listing the various problems with my body and feeling like shit.

  14. Theo_Winterwood says:

    Here is my mid-week check-in a day late, but . . .

    I realized last night that I have been on the fence about going to grad school (in the "I want to but I don't know that it's practical" way) for, oh, maybe two years, and last night I just realized that it is something I want to do, but now I have no idea how to go about it. Because I graduated college seven years ago now and don't know what to do about getting references from old professors. I was a super introverted undergrad (partly being naturally very quiet, partly not knowing how to navigate my bad social anxiety and depression yet) so I know I was not . . . a particularly strong and memorable personality, especially after seven years off the map. I had two professors who probably would remember me, but one recently passed away and the other moved to England like six years ago and I lost touch with him after that.

    So. I don't know. I want to apply to grad schools and I know what I want to study and I know I could do the work if I could get accepted, but I don't know where to start with the application process, and I'm feeling kind of daunted and also pre-emptively discouraged and I'm trying not to feel those things but it's not working yet. Ugh.

    (Sorry, I know this was more just a big messy feelings rant than anything else.)

    • Crivens_the_hag says:

      I feel you! This was me 15 months ago. Now I am doing a master's degree one class at a time while working and aiming for B+ parenting. You can do it !!
      Have you taken the GRE? That was step 1 for me.

      • LaxMom says:

        I so get the "aiming for B+ parenting"! that's a great description of it.

        Even before the GRE, I took a few courses at the community college to get back in the college habit, and explore the field I wanted to get into from a different side. It really helped build my confidence before the GRE. Also, it gave me more recent professors to tap as references. I also used my boss for a reference, it's not recommended, but I needed to. I had had a 15 year gap, so it's possible!

    • CleverManka says:

      Speaking in my capacity as an actual Graduate Student Secretary, I echo LaxMom's suggestion to take some classes somewhere that can give you some current experience in the field and letters of recommendation from faculty.
      <img src="http://ic.pics.livejournal.com/clevermanka/1047329/258502/258502_original.gif"&gt;

  15. exitpursuedbyaclaire says:

    This is a day late, but on Monday, I went to a real-life writing group meetup with real-life former Toasties, and it was wonderful! Everyone was amazingly talented and gave great feedback. And now I have a group to hold myself accountable for actually writing fiction.

  16. Diego Hevia says:

    Easy run before Craig went to work. I am loving the daylight in the mornings now, but that will be gone next week after we spring forward. Boo! Stroller run. We ran out by the airport so Cullen could watch the airplanes. This went fine. . .nothing horrible, nothing great.

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