A Good Place

I’m finally able to get my next post written. Where I’m at now with my treatment and life…

As far as treatment goes, I must change people for my meds again. The nurse practitioner I’ve been seeing since I moved in 2020 has left the practice. I have my first appointment with the new woman on Wednesday. Crossing my fingers. Honestly, while I did like the nurse practitioner, I have not been that impressed with the place my family insisted I go for treatment. I attempted a counselor there. It was an iffy experience at best. I saw her for around six months. We both agreed that we wouldn’t continue to see each other. It was NOT my idea to stop seeing my original therapist. It was my family’s insistence. I have been using our tools to survive everything that has happened. And, after finally deciding that my mental health treatment and team should be MY decision, I started seeing her again as of the beginning of this month. I won’t be seeing her as often as before. Once every 6-8 weeks is what we agreed on since I am doing so well.

What else is going on while in such a good place?

Well, I have my own place for the first time in my life! I was looking for apartments and my sister found mine on Facebook Marketplace at MIDNIGHT one night. I get up the next day and she says, “We’re going to look at an apartment after we feed the horses.” She told me she found one I was able to have my dog in (a must). The landlord had two apartments. The one I originally went to look at and the one I ended up moving into. The one I chose is two bedrooms- although the back “bedroom” has a door going outside, so I use it as a craft and book room. I have an amazing front porch that Bennett, my Australian Shepherd, loves hanging out on. Annie, not so much. She likes when we sit outside in the back where she can run around on her chain. I have stores such as Walgreens and CVS in walking distance. There’s a cupcake shop at the corner of my street that my nieces and nephews want to go to whenever they come over. I have a library at the other corner (which saves me money on books, ha ha). Even the bus is easily accessible. The best part? I am closer to my nieces and nephews, so I get to see them far more.

I decided last September or so that I wanted to return to work. I’m on SSDI, so I’m only able to work part-time (up to 25 hours per week). As much as I would have loved to get back into activities, there wasn’t a nursing home or assisted living hiring that was easy to get to… HOWEVER, the local coffee shop near me that I frequented was looking for help. I turned in a resume and got an interview the following week. I was hired mid-October and started November 1st. It’s great! I get PAID to feed people’s coffee addiction with magic bean water. Not to mention I get free coffee when I work. Generally, I close, but recently I’ve been working some opening shifts. The past three months I’ve even gotten to choose some of our monthly specials. There are days I am reminded why I was happy to get out of customer service, but most days are absolutely great.

There is one assisted living/memory care facility that’s close to me, but they weren’t hiring. They, however, were open to having volunteers, so I started there last August. I volunteer on Tuesdays in memory care and I was with assisted living on Saturdays, but I’ve been working most of them as of late, so it’s just Tuesdays for now. I didn’t realize how much I missed working with seniors until I started working with them again. Diana and I even did a tea party for assisted living!

I unfortunately am unable to get to my church. Which, if you’ve read my posts, you will know how important my faith is to me. One of the good things that came out of Covid is the virtual options that have opened up. The 11am service is live-streamed every week, so I can watch service. I even joined a virtual Bible Study through Zoom. I can’t get to the War Room, but… one day that will be an option again.

And how will it be an option? I am LEARNING TO DRIVE! My sister, Christine, and friend, Diana, convinced me to get my temps. It is not nearly as scary as I was making it out to be. I plan to have my license this Fall.

As you may know, I’m a horse owner. My girl has been one of my biggest therapies. Unfortunately, I lost Zoe this past December (on my birthday). She had been sick for a little over a year; and was getting worse. She wouldn’t have made it through the first cold spell. So, the day after our 15th Gotcha Day, I said goodbye to my sweet girl. A friend is going to build me a shadow box for her halter, lead, and some pictures. I’m also going to get a necklace with a Cross with hair from her mane in it. One day I will get a new equine partner. I can’t imagine living the rest of my life without one.

I got a new pup last April (2021). A Lab mix, Annie. This year, she and I have started learning all about dock diving. She’s had two lessons and will go off the dock without a problem, but only if I’m in the pool. Need to work on that. I’m hoping to get her to the point we can compete. The dogs jump off the dock after a bumper and the jumps are measured. My friend Diana got us started. She said when Annie jumps you can see her back leg muscles. Once she gets more confidence, she’s going to be great! Bennett gets some peace and quiet when I get Annie out of the house. He is NOT into athletics, ha ah. He’d rather sleep on the couch. ALTHOUGH, he and Annie play constantly.

As I mentioned, Covid opened virtual possibilities. NAMI included. I’m still volunteering with them. I’m working Helpline a few times a month using Google Voice, have taught Peer-to-Peer over Zoom, spoken virtually for programs, and am in the process of getting a book club style support group going. Once I drive, I plan to do in-person events as well.

Well, this is where I am. Moving was beyond hard. I lost everything moving- my church, NAMI, the nursing home I had volunteered/worked at my entire adult life (I’m 38 and started there when I was 19), my mental health team, and barn friends. I have learned that I am far stronger than I thought I was. I remind myself of the coping toolboxes my therapist and I created when starting to have a minor rough patch. Honestly, not that my therapist and psychiatrist could control it, but I can’t remember the last time I have been in such a good place. That doesn’t mean I get to stop working hard on wellness. I do. It just means I can breathe.

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