I’m a Flipping Genuis….in the shower

First and foremost I would like to point out (for those of you that chose to click on the title and not pass it up) that the title was going to be: I’m a F@cking Genuis….in the shower but because I am blogging under another category for school I felt I should behave myself!!

This post was made possible by: MXD Cocktail Co, Long Island Ice Tea!

Side note: I heard today on HLN that some Mom’s are drinking wine in excess and as much as I like to joke I say this seriously: If drinking wine or any other alchohol has got out of hand, you know it and you should stop, seriously!! Secondly, being a nurse and a mom I try to research everything and especially if I am going to blog about it and I can sincerly say that I don’t fully understand addiction. I can and have drank every night for a year and then not drink for 3 years and then do it all over again, I never considered that an addiction or a relapse but if you participate in drug rehab that is what they say!! I’ve always considered addiction to be something you can’t willingly stop doing without terrible side effects and withdrawls! (2nd & 3rd sidenote: we’re addicted to HLN & we even have our faves but I have to tell you that @LynnSmithTV is not messing around!! Ok, 1 more sidenote, she came back from having her 2nd baby and now she is even more fabulous, I’m like “what? that’s crazy! Go on with your bad self @LynnSmithTV!!) Ok, I lied, one more sidenote: And that’s the simple truth! Again, I was like: go on with your bad self #branding #$$$$

Ok, back to me being a genuis: This is going to serve 2 purposes (well 3 since I rambled on earlier)

1: Sunshine’s LIIT hack, which only qualifies as a hack for people who “save furniture from the side of the road”, Tell their children: I raised you not to fight and then highly consider getting out of the mini van and whooping someone for cutting your baby off while you watch in the rearview mirror!, and have had at least 1 utility shut off already this year!! LMAO

LITT hack: It is like my own little “retreat” to turn on a long, hot shower, drink……pretty much whatever, preferably wine or MXD Long Island Ice Tea, and listen to really awesome music starting with: Aerosmith, Dream On, with: The Southern California Children’s Chorus-Boston Marathon Bobing Tribute

2nd: We will address the “clearly creaive genuis” that occurrs when I am in the shower! I’ve thought about putting a whitboard (a whitboard, seriously!?ūüėč) white board in the shower for years because I always have this time “alone” so to speak wth my thoughts! I can’t decide if I love all this thinking in the shower or if it pisses me off for taking over my LIIT retreat hack……so here we are…….still waiting on the (undocumented and quickly forgotten) creative genuis that occurrs, only in my shower….Like the French Film: To Rome with Love where the guy only sings opera while he is in a shower with running water!

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The Book of Sunshine: Chapter 1

Date: December of 1976-1981

Age : infant-5years

Husband: J.D.

In the 70’s there was a movie titled: Sunshine . I can’t really tell you why but this is where my mom says she got my name. As with the first few years of my life and what led up to it, I never asked my mom about the origin of my name until after 2001, after I turned 25, after my mom had a major stroke and really couldn’t tell me much.

This movie was a “made for T.V.” special and it’s soundtrack consisted of 7 songs by John Denver, one of which was “Sunshine on my Shoulders’ for which the film is named: IMDb

There’s a menagerie of memories I have up until 5 years old. They are kind of thrown together and all mushed up. My most vivid memories are from 2 different apartments in the same apartment house.

The 2nd floor apartment consisted of a living room to the right when you walked in, a small bathroom just to your left, the kitchen straight ahead and then the only bedroom was to the left of the kitchen. In the upstairs apartment we had a female German Shepard name: Lady and when I was around 3 she jumped up on the roll away bed with me during an argument and her paw got my cheek leaving a scar on my cheek right below my left eye.I also remember a picture of me or maybe it was just my favorite dress pictured in my head hanging on the door frame leading into the living room from the hallway. Either way I remember my favorite pink dress, the one I wore in the pics that actually hung at the neighborhood bar: Julies Tavern, in Decatur, Il , right down the road from where I grew up! I never have come across these pictures as an adult but I remain hopeful!

In the downstairs apartment I have several memories mostly good! My mom would always take me to the public library to rent Little Golden Books & Dr Seuss! I loved reading and being read to and the fun poetry world of Who-ville would leave an everlasting impression (positive impression) on my life! Additionally there was an incident in which I washed my hair with Nair (a bottle of cream rinse used to remove bodily hair which unfortunately included the hair on your head) and to “teach me a lesson, or whatever, my mom cut all of my hair short”. Also we grew up in a time when kids in Africa were starving so it was our duty as a member of The U.S. to eat every thing on our plate no matter what! This particular night it consisted of a bowl of chilli that I did not want to eat for whatever reason so I added A LOT of salt to make it better! Of course it actually made it worse but I had to eat it anyway because we did not WASTE food back then!!!! Lastly, the memory I tell no one about: My stepfather was an alcoholic and he believed in whippens! If you did wrong then you got a spanking with this red and white belt! Well I clearly did something wrong that warranted a whippen with THE BELT!!!! After getting the spanking, I rolled around on the bed in a “convulsive fit” and rolled off the bed and broke my left jaw on the “end table” that sat next to the bed. Who knows what the Dr was told but ultimately the dentist wired my jaw shut to allow the break to heal which meant I had to eat baby food in preschool…..it didn’t last….I pulled the wires out and the dentist gave up.
I honestly don’t remember how soon after this incident my mom and I moved out but I do believe anything longer than immediately would not have occurred if the roles were reversed!

The Book of Sunshine: Introduction

(A short, ok sort of short, preview)

My early beliefs shaped so many decisions:

As a young girl I HATED my name. So much so that I always went by Sunny until I was in Junior High. Why couldn’t I have been named Kim? That was my dream name! So simple and not drawing any attention. That is the way I wanted it!11021168_10203210876383998_6864499889922935607_n

Poor People Have Poor Ways!


Causes of poverty

Poverty is an exceptionally complicated social phenomenon, and trying to discover its causes is equally complicated. The stereotypic (and simplistic) explanation persists‚ÄĒthat the poor cause their own poverty‚ÄĒbased on the notion that anything is possible in America. Some theorists have accused the poor of having little concern for the future and preferring to ‚Äúlive for the moment‚ÄĚ; others have accused them of engaging in self‚Äźdefeating behavior. Still other theorists have characterized the poor as fatalists, resigning themselves to a culture of poverty in which nothing can be done to change their economic outcomes. In this culture of poverty‚ÄĒwhich passes from generation to generation‚ÄĒthe poor feel negative, inferior, passive, hopeless, and powerless.The ‚Äúblame the poor‚ÄĚ perspective is stereotypic and not applicable to all of the underclass. Not only are most poor people able and willing to work hard, they do so when given the chance. The real trouble has to do with such problems as minimum wages and lack of access to the education necessary for obtaining a better‚Äźpaying job.
More recently, sociologists have focused on other theories of poverty. One theory of poverty has to do with the flight of the middle class, including employers, from the cities and into the suburbs. This has limited the opportunities for the inner‚Äźcity poor to find adequate jobs. According to another theory, the poor would rather receive welfare payments than work in demeaning positions as maids or in fast‚Äźfood restaurants. As a result of this view, the welfare system has come under increasing attack in recent years.
Again, no simple explanations for or solutions to the problem of poverty exist. Although varying theories abound, sociologists will continue to pay attention to this issue in the years to come.

https://www.cliffsnotes.com/study-guides/sociology/social-and-global-stratification/causes-and-effects-of-poverty

Roughly 14% or 40+ million Americans live below the poverty line and depending on if you are Trump (250,000 Americans live in “deep poverty”) or the UN (18.5 million Americans live in “deep poverty”) Growing up I always subscribe to the belief that “poor people have poor ways”. This is certainly a personal belief based on personal experience as well as data compiled by many theorists etc. I’ve read some very offensive versions of this belief: “poor people are the way they are because they are lazy/ don’t care/ don’t know any better”. For me it’s clear that poverty is often a life cycle. You start out poor and it can become like a habit. You start to realise or believe that you aren’t worth an education or a good job. You are often looked down upon in a way that tells you to “stay in your place”. My counselor recently stated it very well. People living in poverty often feel isolated. Poverty puts you in a box! My point to all this is that my family seems to have been plagued by some pretty messed up choices for generations and most of these choices seem to occur most often in poor families. So yes, as television will tell you: drug addiction, domestic violence and child abuse doesn’t discriminate BUT these situations are much more common to families living in poverty! 


The effects of poverty

The effects of poverty are serious. Children who grow up in poverty suffer more persistent, frequent, and severe health problems than do children who grow up under better financial circumstances.
Many infants born into poverty have a low birth weight, which is associated with many preventable mental and physical disabilities. Not only are these poor infants more likely to be irritable or sickly, they are also more likely to die before their first birthday.


Children raised in poverty tend to miss school more often because of illness. These children also have a much higher rate of accidents than do other children, and they are twice as likely to have impaired vision and hearing, iron deficiency anemia, and higher than normal levels of lead in the blood, which can impair brain 

https://www.cliffsnotes.com/study-guides/sociology/social-and-global-stratification/causes-and-effects-of-poverty

So, my point to all this carrying on is: I will start writing a collection of posts that will all be titled: The Book of Sunshine. My method has changed several times in the last few days and I already had the majority of this post completed as well as the post titled “Prologue” so I’ll officially start the story with:The Book of Sunshine: Chapter 1. I don’t believe I will have titles for each chapter yet nor do I have an exact plan for a timeline but I do have a brief outline from me being a toddler to age 16 which is actually divided up by who my mom was married to at the time.¬†

I’ve been trying to get to a place in my life that brings me peace! I’ve made SO much progress year to year but this year I’ve made the most progress thus far! To have peace I feel that I have to make peace with my past and as it turns out, to make peace with your past you have to process it and as it turns out that includes a much more difficult task: You have to take a long hard look at what makes you who you are AND you have to be “OK” with it OR adjust accordingly. This collection of posts are my biggest and best attempt at processing my past and because that is a work in progress so are my methods of processing!

Anxiety/Depression/Baggage (it’s all related)

anx·i·e·ty
aNGňązńę…ôdńď/wp-1539450923462..jpg
noun
a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease, typically about an imminent event or something with an uncertain outcome.
“he felt a surge of anxiety”
synonyms: worry, concern, apprehension, apprehensiveness, uneasiness, unease, fearfulness, fear, disquiet, disquietude, inquietude, perturbation, agitation, angst, misgiving, nervousness, nerves, tension, tenseness; More

 Depression:
1: feelings of severe despondency and dejection.
“self-doubt creeps in and that swiftly turns to depression”
2: a long and severe recession in an economy or market.
“the depression in the housing market

Baggage:

past experiences or long-held ideas regarded as burdens and impediments.
“the emotional baggage I’m hauling around”
wp-1539451156930..jpg
It wasn’t until the last couple of weeks that I realized anxiety was the voice I kept hearing in my head telling me “you can’t do this” “you don’t have time for that” “remember, that is too hard to do” “you aren’t smart enough to accomplish________” I kept identifying the feelings as stress! This is a link I found for screening tools that can help you sort through various mental health issues:
Growing up I thought that people could just look at me and see right through me. I was sure that people could tell that I was growing up with a shit home life, poor, parenting myself, abuse etc. It took me years of adulting to know that wasn’t the case.

I’ve been going to counseling since I was 9 years old! Well off and on anyway. Any counseling before I was 20 was mainly court ordered due to being in foster care and/or related to resolving issues of abuse which looking back never was successful.

1_IN_10perpetratorsrisk_factors_3SIGNS

If you or someone you know has been abused:

GET HELP NOW

CALL 866.FOR.LIGHT OR TEXT LIGHT TO 741741

You are not alone ‚Äď resources and support are available. Call to have questions answered or chat with a trained crisis counselor, 24/7 at no charge. All conversations are confidential.

 

Researchers estimate that 38% of child victims disclose the fact that they have been sexually
abused.5,6 Of these, 40% tell a close friend, rather than an adult or authority.7 These ‚Äúfriend-to-friend‚ÄĚ
disclosures do not always result in reports. This means that the vast majority of child sexual abuse
incidents are never reported to authorities, though research suggests that disclosure rates to authorities
may be increasing.

Finkelhor, D., Ormrod, R., Turner, H. A., & Hamby, S. L. (2012). Child and youth victimization known to school, police,
and medical officials in a national sample of children and youth. Juvenile Justice Bulletin, (No. NCJ 235394). Washington,
DC: United States Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

I’ve always avoided discussing the abuse I endured growing up. I stuffed it down deep for years and spent my time perpetuating chaos subconsciously avoiding my childhood. I did have counselors that would elude to the fact that I wasn’t covering the root of all my problems but I was hell bent on putting out fires because that required less effort.

Finally I moved back to Decatur in 2013 and life started to be less chaotic and as a result I had more time for self reflection. wp-15322971963037355743889565155872.png

In 2015 I found an amazing counselor who let me avoid the topic of abuse for awhile but then started pressing me. That eventually led me to finding a counselor at Growing Strong Sexual Assault Center but not until 2017 and I only went a few times AND I verbalized what I had endured ONCE and thought I was cured and didn’t go back.

This situation is actually intertwined with another that I’ve been going through this year. I would not say at all that my childhood was actually the cause of my opiate addiction but after finally openly discussing some things with the counselor I am seeing now I can see a correlation.

People who misuse opioids often report extensive histories of childhood maltreatment, which include emotional and physical abuse, emotional and physical neglect, and sexual abuse……Authors:News Author: Batya Swift Yasgur, MA, LSW; CME Author: Laurie Barclay, MD

Of course it started with a prescription here and there over the years (2007-2015) and then it occurred to me that if I took pain medicine then I could work more. The pain in my feet, carpel tunnel and back would be relieved which curbed the fatigue and enabling me to work more hours. After the scripts ran out then I found opiates on my own and of course justified it all with the above reasoning.  This ties into the childhood issues because being sexually abused over many years by several men made me feel like damaged goods. If I could work more than I would be indispensable regardless of being damaged goods! If I could have identified these issues earlier in life it would have saved me a lot of heartache!

I started this blog for 2 reasons:

1: I was sure that writing this blog would be therapeutic

2: I wanted to help others

Point being, if there is anything that I would stress to anyone, DON”T WAIT! Don’t wait to take care of yourself!wp-15322981882021055409800515570857.png

I think it is safe to say that we all want some of the same things in life and just as I thought when looking it up the #1 thing was:

Happiness
Biggest Challenge:¬† ‚ÄúNot knowing what I want to do.‚ÄĚ
Happiness is a choice folks.¬† It just is, plain and simple.¬† Every single day you get to decide if you are going to be happy or not.¬† I think the main reason most people are unhappy is because they are looking for something outside of themselves to ‚Äúmake them happy.‚Ä̬† Guess what, the new car, house, outfit, boyfriend, or girlfriend is not the answer.¬† The¬†only person or thing that will bring you happiness is YOU…….Kathy Caprino¬†¬†The Top 10 Things People Want In Life But Can‚Äôt Seem To Get.¬†¬†

You can’t be happy if your anxious or depressed and the only way to beat anxiety and depression ongoing is to get rid of your baggage! The sooner you get rid of it the better! You can’t just ignore it, shove it down, alter your mind to avoid it….you have to take it step by step. You have to actually put in the sometimes long, tiring, frustrating, no immediate gratification work to boldly acknowledge your baggage (each piece individually) take it out, unfold it, see where it came from, why it is keeping you down and after you’ve gone through each one (like steps in the grieving process) you can then and only then fold it back up, put it in the bag and let it go!

Zachuery aka Zachariah aka Pooky Wooky

October 19, 1994 (2 weeks after my due date, 1 day after a failed attempt at inducing labor and 4-6 hours after the Dr assisted my water breaking) came my 2nd bouncing baby boy!

The next day we took him home and unlike his older brother he started sleeping 4+ hours at night within the first couple of weeks. He was such a calm baby (especially in contrast to his brother) that I called the pediatrician concerned something was wrong! After a handful of questions the pediatrician assured me that Zach was just fine and just a good sleeping baby!

I’ve mentioned this in a past post but I like to remind my kids that they are so smart and healthy because I breast fed all of them and Zachuery for the longest. I’m sure there is a direct correlation to his good health and generally good decision making!

As the boys were growing up we always told them Zach would be president and his older brother Sean would be his bodyguard. That’s not quite how things have turned out but it gives you a feel for their personalities.

Zach did great in school and starting in 5th grade (due to his distain for daycare) he started watching his little sisters before and after school. He was always so responsible and fairly meticulous. We realized at one point that he had been folding his dirty clothes and when we would eat out everyone would be done eating but Zach would just be done cutting his food into perfectly even pieces!!

A review of over 200 birth order studies found that middles are characterized as sociable, more faithful in monogamous relationships, and have the fewest “acting out” problems…..

However, if events would have been different then I would not have spent this summer with the newest born love of my life…..Zachs’ daughter : Rima

ÔŅľUnfortunately in September Rimas’ mother came and took her to Texas and will not allow us to see her or talk to her. Zach and her mother were never married so at this point he has no legal rights. However, I have quickly become a legal self help guru as a result and I have begun filing the necessary paperwork to get into court and establish paternity and custody/visitation. We do not have lots of money for an attorney but we are going Monday for a free consultation! In the meanwhile we are keeping busy using our missing her as motivation to work hard on getting her back in our lives!!

To write or Not To write

I’ve read several posts about having posts in backup for when you can’t/ don’t write. The only issue I really have with that is that it doesn’t feel like I write as genuinely when it isn’t in the moment. I can’t remember the last time I felt like writing. I go to enough counseling sessions these days that I should have plenty to write about. I’ve learned so much about myself¬† recently but it all revolves around 2 things that I can’t discuss (an ongoing issue I’ve hit on and abuse I endured as a child)……..where do people get the strength to tell their stories? Like really,¬† I am so exhausted each and everyday I feel like doing NOTHING!! Certainly not discussing my shit childhood!¬†wp-1534960308688239657689092335712.png

I have a long list of things I’d LOVE to write about:

  • Poverty
  • Prison Reform
  • Recent GOD encounters
  • My Potbelly Pig
  • My 1st middle son
  • More nursing home honesty
  • Childhood abuse

The Great Fight: 9/27/18 (Me vs. my most recent demons) All of these are actually related and it is strange to me that it took until I was 31+10 years old to figure it out.

I would also like to write about the following positive subjects:

Sports: Dallas Cowboys, Serena Williams, Tiger Woods

Movies

Books

Music

Those 4 items are the things I use to get my cheap thrills. I intentionally seek out anything and everything (#1 should be FOOD) that will fill up my love cup and take my mind off this awful and hideous fight that I can’t tell anyone about openly and honestly until after Thursday Morning!!¬†wp-15353855252858176264681302685078.png

I did just remember however that I do have a few very delightful events I want to share!!!!

1: My daughter text me a week ago to tell me that she knew about inexpensive Taylor Swift tickets (typically I would say I am a part time/ closet fan) so some how we were able to put things together quick enough that we got to go! I have to admit I really enjoyed her music and the show she put on!

 

2: Thursday I visited a little town close to us: Arthur, Illinois. They have wonderful little Amish shops. Where I had a delightful time! Just leisurely walking around and enjoying the old shops. In particular I found a little store that had it’s own little library/books for sale area and fell in love!

The most important items I found and purchased are the entire reason I have loved pigs my whole life and have collected pig everything and led me to having Edgar, the Super Bestest Pig Ever! 20180920_151132

3: I have been a Football/ Dallas Cowboy fan since 1993. I have been to see them once a few years ago in St. Louis before the Rams abandoned the area and they won and it was the best thing since sliced cheese other than all the other things that I said were!! Anyway, during a series of very FORTUNATE events I was able to buy 2 tickets with the BEST view of any event, to see the Cowboys play against the colts on December, 16th of this year which so happens to be my birthday!!20180919_131631screenshot_20180919-153634_bixby-home-e1537751267249.jpg

Days like this

 

wp-15353072867981784191584359699017.pngEvery once in awhile I actually slow down long enough to enjoy life. It feels so strange, like doing something your not suppose to be doing ie: sitting around all day watching football/ bachelor in paradise and your favorite music videos of all time. I feel like that last sentence just told my age…..I did own….well my mom owned an 8 track version of the pop song: Little Red Riding Hood by, OMG, I just looked up the artist: Sam the Sham & The Pharaohs. Like really…80s….you couldn’t come up with anything better….maybe shorter. Well anyway, moving on…….I feel as though maybe I shouldn’t write during these times because it will either ramble on, get off track several times……or worse yet, just make absolutely no sense whatsoever. Actually I like that idea! My goal will be for this post to make no sense whatsoever!

wp-15353072248564090604442485858113.pngSo, last night I was babysitting my beautiful Granddaughtermvimg_20180725_133016-animation

She just so happens to love music which works great for me! She really gets excited over every genre that I play from the 70s through today but she really seems to love the 70s & 80s! I think she appreciates (I’m having a very hard time articulating right now) the grandness? the bigness? the loudness? Hell, I don’t know, all I know is that she is clearly from my DNA!! She loves:Queen, Aerosmith, Pointer Sisters, Ciara, Nikki Minaj, EMINEM….that was the most important test! At any rate she took a late nap last night so she was raring to go, singing and dancing to music with me and then running off to wreak havoc on the house, the pig, the cat and my Mom! Nonetheless we had a great time!

So, if anyone is keeping up I’d like to give myself props: A week ago Wednesday I stopped taking some “unnecessary” medication. Luckily I was already sick as I could possibly be and for the 6 days following I was able to taper down another “unnecessary” medication. So today makes 5 days or 120 hours with nothing “unnecessary”.

I have to write lightly for another 30-60 days because what I write could effect much more than this blog. So in this post and “all in a week” I had to write in a manner that I will clarify later but I feel like if I don’t add some “fine print” that I am not being honest…if none of this makes sense than: 1: I’ve accomplished my earlier goal for this post and 2: I’ll clarify it all at a later date.

All in a week

I don’t know if I’ll ever post this but I’m writing it anyway. For the last 4 years I’ve been taking¬† prescription medication. I’ve tried to wean myself off. Last week I became so sick from a virus that I couldn’t get out of bed so I thought it would be a good time to try again! So last Wednesday I started titrating down (I’m in no way suggesting that this is the best way for anyone else to do this) and last night was the very last of the very last. I sweat and then I’m cold, back and forth, back and forth. I took my Wellbutrin and Buspar last night along with melatonin and I slept from midnight until 8am without my legs becoming restless which is amazing. However I couldn’t get out of bed until noon because I was still so tired and cold! Thank God for Edgar!

He keeps me going no matter what and if course my ever patient husband

They keep me in good spirits and faith keeps me strong. So being sick and tapering off “unnecessary” medication isn’t enough so mother nature made her appearance (my opinion about this is in a post: thank you Eve), my oldest son had been arrested the week before for a FTA (failure to appear) and was released on the same Wednesday as above (8/15/18) which could have been a good thing but that’s a whole post by itself.

So during this week 8/15-8/22 I’ve been trying to get things in order to start school (first class was Monday and thankfully it’s only 1 day a week) today I wake up and check the mail and find a letter saying my financial aid wasn’t processed because they were lacking documentation! Documentation I sent in last week during my misery

So I called and the person they told me to send the documentation to hadn’t even been in and had 45 emails she hasn’t gone through. They claim however that they will get it worked out!

Last but certainly not least it occurred to me that the reoccurring issue that I’m constantly running from is my childhood. The abuse that I haven’t addressed is holding me back. So yesterday I made an appt with growing strong sexual assault center that’s set for today at 2pm.

Soooooo that’s my week in a nutshell!

The Crime Report – Home

Criminal Justice…. This is a link to The CrimeReport a news and media site full of unbiased info, news and resources about our “criminal Justice system”

https://www.facebook.com/The-Crime-Report-110343137639/

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