Sinking

The precise word I’ve used to describe the hell I’ve been going through is, “Sinking.” I say this to my doctor at least twice a month; “I’m sinking.” He gets a confused/torn look on his face and tries to distract me with questions. I’m thisclose to losing my patience. 🙄 I worry that one day, I will not employ a filter and will say, “You went to medical school to give me that face? I hate to inform you how ripped off you were.” Alas, I try not to be rude to the one person who, medically, has my back. I respect the fact that he doesn’t humor me, roll his eyes, or try to dismiss what I’m saying, but sometimes, I think we’ve collectively met a frustration moment because nothing is helping me.

Am I sinking right this second? Yes. I had a mental plan in my head for how today would go. I woke up early. Much earlier than I planned, so I shut off my alarm and started my day. I cooked a real breakfast, which seems like nothing special, but I am not always afforded the time and space to do this. Today, I was, and I feel healthier for starting the day without having my eating disorder screaming at me. I took care of Cat and Kitten (mostly because Kitten came looking for me a little before 5:00 a.m., but also because she was staring at me. Hard,). I responded to some business e-mails and found out a package will arrive today, one which was not expected to arrive until the 16th. Not bad. Then I started hearing potential construction. I figured maybe a neighbor was having gas or oil delivered, but when I checked and found all these trucks and equipment, I nearly lost my temper. My next door neighbor is having her driveway ripped up and expanded. Okay, great, but did they have to start working before 7:00 a.m.? 😡 They are also incredibly close to the property line, so I keep waiting for them to do something stupid, knock something out, or damage something. At this point, nothing would shock me. There are chunks of concrete just piled up on the street. I don’t want to assume they will remove it properly. I can’t be the only person agitated by this. They are taking up half the damn neighborhood.

Ultimately, this incident messed with my mindset. I had a panic attack from the noise, and now my adrenaline is dropping. Turns out, adrenaline crash is serious business. It made me realize I didn’t get enough sleep to do what I’d planned for today, and whenever I can’t do something, I feel worse than anyone could possibly imagine. I am going to give myself some time, and if I can do it, great. If not, I will add an additional hour to my prep time and do it tomorrow morning. Not ideal, but at least it will get done, and I can see how I feel when I leave the hospital.

I have to stop beating myself up when unplanned things trip up my anxiety or add to my stress levels. I’m not good with external noise. It’s reached trauma-level for me. I used to think I was being unfair with that, until a friend admitted she feels the exact same way and talked about how it affects her. I suddenly realized I’d been gaslit into thinking I was the problem. Mind you, I’m not outside attacking anyone or screaming. I’m just suffering in silence, and that’s unhealthy.

Over the past few days, I’ve received some texts and lengthy messages thanking me for various small gestures. That was nice (Wait, I’ll get there.), but having to turn down a standing invitation nearly made me tell one of these people that I will never, ever spend a holiday with them.

Let me preface this by saying that this person is a repeat offender and I’ve got no patience left to deal with the rudeness. A deeply disrespectful comment was made to me about a year or so ago by this person’s partner. Instead of putting this person in their place for how disrespectful they were to me, I moved into a place of, “This isn’t going to work out if I can’t be honest.” I’m tired of having to protect the other person from their spouse. I chose to say nothing, because sometimes silence is the only answer someone deserves. It’s not about being mean or manipulative, or even hurtful. Those thoughts don’t cross my mind because I know who I am and where I am coming from when I stop speaking to someone. The silence is more about someone crossing your boundaries and you deciding what’s best for your well-being. I decided it was best for me to back away even further, because I don’t need anyone’s toxic opinions or bullshit directed towards me. That’s not welcoming, that is behavior which instantly pisses me off and let’s me know that I will not be able to remain civil moving forward. Like I said, I know where I’m coming from. This person has no clue how I think/feel, and they don’t care. It’s not worth me turning it into an argument because there’s no peace to be had. I know this.

If I am, for example, having a horrible day (Usually pain related, but it can be other things affecting me, as well. I’m human,), it doesn’t give me the right to go out and be toxic towards others. It doesn’t give me the right to be a disrespectful bitch, either. It’s actually when I most need to withdraw from society, write, listen to music, cry, whatever I need in that particular moment, on that particular day. I give myself the space to honor me. I say nothing. I speak to very few people. Believe it or not, about ninety-eight percent of people don’t care about your feelings or what you’re going through. They care that they aren’t the one going through it if it’s bad, though, so it’s important to surround yourself with the two percent who actually give a damn about you, good or bad, no matter what. For me, that’s under ten people. I am okay with those numbers, because it’s honest. I see these people clearly, and their support and love comes from a genuine place.

One message I received sent me right back into a state of pure silence with a specific individual, after I rolled my eyes in disgust. It was a lengthy, “all about me and my life” kind of message, with a few lines asking about how I am doing. Three in total. If my phone wasn’t expensive (I feel like they ALL are, especially these days.), I would have thrown it across the damn room. I came away angered, irritated, and physically ill. This person is so fucking toxic, and my body responds negatively to interactions with them. I tend to keep them to the bare minimum, and I’ve actually ceased most communication. I’d sent a polite holiday card and received verbal diarrhea as my, “reward”. I have to make the decision to cease communications permanently. I have to put my health above their stupidity.

Sometimes, there are clear signs you need to cut a relationship off. You might try to hold off on this for days, weeks, months, or in this case, YEARS, but inevitably, you cannot continue on. Ten plus years and I am still trying to give this person chances. It is okay to acknowledge this and the fact that I can no longer do it.

It doesn’t necessarily matter who the person is, because if you feel sick after dealing with them in person, or you get physically ill after reading a message from them, then your body is keeping the score. Your vibration is rejecting their stupidity, selfishness, ego, attitude, or something else that you inherently CANNOT work with. It is completely fair to honor this about yourself.

I am moving in a different direction. I wish people well, but I can’t stay on their level. I have grown and I have leveled up. I can’t take myself down to their level whenever it suits them to deign to say something to me, and then be sick from giving them the benefit of the doubt or another chance. I’m not going to shrink myself to make anyone else feel better ever again. I deserve better, and they deserve to have people in their lives who vibrate on their lower level. It isn’t my responsibility to take care of everyone. I tried. I even asked someone if I was being fair and they said, “Lisa, you’ve been fair for twelve years. This is out of fucking control.”

I am many things, but I’m not a people-pleaser. I’m not going to gossip about anyone. I am not going to engage after you disrespect me or mine; that’s a line you don’t want to cross with me. I am not going to play into anyone’s victimization of self. I’m not going to constantly give someone chances to hurt, minimize, or disrespect me. I feel like that’s been a running theme lately, and I refuse to engage with it. I’m not going to permit ANYONE to re-traumatize me. I’m going to be stronger, smarter, and meaner. I’m going to be exceedingly discerning as to who I let get close to me on ALL levels. The door to my life is not open for newcomers. A spot at my table is a spot which must be earned. My time is valuable, and I won’t waste it on anyone who doesn’t understand that relationships are two people giving one hundred percent. Yes, there are times when you cannot do that, but you admit it instead of pretending.

I won’t be responding to anything or anyone while I focus on myself. I’m truly done giving out extra chances and opportunities. If people fall to the wayside as a result, that’s fine. I know who I am and what I bring to the table. This isn’t about being cruel or hurtful to anyone, as they have consistently chosen to be unacceptably rude to me, but it is about taking my power back. It’s redefining the term, “No.”, and sticking to it because these interactions affect my sanity. I deserve to let, “No.” be what it is. A complete sentence.

We’re currently in Aries Season♈, which is the first sign of the zodiac. For me, one means ‘New Beginnings’. I also look at the Hebrew aleph bet in a similar way. Aleph is the first letter and represents the number one in Kabbalah. One means starting from scratch, if you must, and rebuilding things in YOUR true vision. It’s the beginning of the zodiac wheel, and I take it seriously.

As the eighth sign of the zodiac, I am the embodiment of life, death, and rebirth. I might fall, but I’ll come back stronger. The actual symbol for this is tattooed on the top of my spine. You’ll sometimes hear people say we have four phases as Scorpion, Serpent, Eagle, and Phoenix, where others will omit the Serpent completely. I’m moving towards my phoenix phase. I can feel it. Others can see it in me. People have commented about my new energy or my good energy, usually people I don’t expect it from. That, in and of itself, is a positive thing.

Some people can see/read auras and some people simply pick up on a vibe from others. I saw auras more as a child, and I still see them around babies/infants and animals. Most animals are gold or silver, which to me, represents their pure natures. Babies might come up in lighter shades of purity, too. If I close my eyes, I can feel my aura is indigo and blue. Sometimes I can see the colors out of the corner of my eye. I don’t come across a lot of people who have these colors intensely attached to them. Sometimes I know there’s purple or yellow around me, or even grey or red. Not all colors are permanent aspects of one’s aura. Sometimes we will temporarily have an inauthentic color attached to our aura due to life circumstances, stress, illness, etc. The issues will pass and the color will leave. Anyone who talks about auras and their colors will see things differently and read color differently. I know someone who constantly talks about how rare pink auras are, but then declares every other woman pink. They will also say not all people are empaths, but will then declare every other person they read as an empath. That’s inaccurate, so I give myself space from people who don’t practice what they preach.

I’m moving towards physical, mental, and emotional betterment. I don’t have time for anyone who isn’t on the same frequency. I have to release all the negative energy which others have placed upon me in their journey towards whatever… A true empath knows it’s not his or her energy to own, but the ugly energy others have given out. It can cling to us like soap scum. Not only am I wearing sage perfume from here on in, but I’m done being the emotional dumping ground for people who cannot return my energy. I know my worth.

In life, sometimes silence and walking away is the healthiest choice you can make before officially cutting people off. Today, I’ve made my choice. I say goodbye to the energy and happiness vultures, for which there are many. I wish them growth and healing, just NOT with me in their lives. My journey no longer involves their presence.

I thought I had finally gotten a handle on my sleep, until Saturday night. I tossed and turned for three hours. I was then furious at the wasted time, so I got up and occupied my mind until I finally knew I would fall asleep. It was freezing, so Kitten was with me, trying to stay warm and still be close by. She was pacing in agitation, because she knows I’m not okay, and she tries to make sure she’s with me as much as possible, but to own a cat is to know that they will choose where they’re going to lie down and they will also choose who they will be with. Unfortunately, I don’t have the option of my current sleep cycle this week. I have four doctor’s appointments beginning tomorrow, one of which is an emergency appointment to rule out surgery. Only one is a video this week, which means I can stay home that day, so I am trying not to have a complete and total meltdown knowing I am dealing with so much. It brings a lot of anxiety to the surface, unfortunately. If you are lucky enough not to experience such feelings, that’s all well and good, but for those who do suffer from anxiety, we aren’t harming anyone. We’re struggling.

Two appointments this week are for in-office procedures. One hurts like hell, but isn’t a huge issue. I have experienced far worse pain, but it’s something done without anesthesia, and my doctor is exceptionally blasé about telling you how it will feel and how it will or won’t heal. She has repeatedly failed to provide information to me which she puts in my medical chart, which genuinely angers me. I only found out when her partner informed me during a Telehealth appointment, and he was very helpful and descriptive. I followed his instructions and was pleased that he got me in three months earlier than originally planned. I will likely say something about her lack of information this time because I’ve had enough. The other procedure requires at least two solid weeks of physical rest. It means adhering to little to no activity, except for walking (You live, you learn. When I rest, I don’t suffer constantly. If I don’t rest, I suffer terribly.). That’s if I get the okay from the orthopedic surgeon to walk on my injuries. I have no idea what he will or won’t say.

A little over two years ago, I fell and injured my right knee, foot, and ankle. I had fractured bones in my foot and there were some tears in various tendons in all areas. The doctor saw me about two weeks after I fell. He wanted me to make big changes to my footwear (I have.). He also wanted me to stay off of my right leg whenever possible, while still being realistic that even in pain, I have to move around. He was hopeful that it would heal on its own and I wouldn’t require surgery, but he was honest and made no promises. At the follow-up appointment, I was lectured that if I didn’t stay off of it more, I’d almost certainly require surgery. Inevitably, I left the office incredibly frustrated because I had truly stayed off of it to the best of my ability. Then Covid put us all into lockdown and my June follow-up was canceled. Without calling me, his office proceeded to cancel appointments for July, September, and then they didn’t bother to get back to me at all when they reopened. He was backed up with surgical patients, post-op appointments, etc. I let it go because I wasn’t in constant pain, but a few months ago, I felt things get bad again. I thought I’d sprained my ankle, but no, it was the whole knee, ankle, foot combination all over again. I have since done something to my left knee, as well. I was granted an appointment via their cancellation list, mostly because they saw that they’d canceled on me multiple times without an official notification of any kind. Mind you, I hurt myself in January of 2020. I don’t know what he’s going to say this time. He had initially prescribed high strength Aleve, and I still have most of the bottle. It simply isn’t strong enough. I’m not going to argue with him about it, but if surgery is involved, I am getting it in writing that my pain will be fully managed before, during, and after the fact. I am not playing the, “You need six months of physical therapy.” bullshit with him, or anyone else. I can’t even say how often I am using Magnesium Spray or topical lidocaine patches for temporary pain relief. I’ve barely made a dent in the bottle, but it feels like I use it way too often. On the plus side, it is fast-acting, as opposed to taking a daily supplement. It’s drying on the skin, but nothing a little extra moisturizer won’t fix. There are days when it is my saving grace. I try to use homeopathic remedies so long as they work, even though they aren’t covered by my insurance.

Having a week with a bunch of appointments squeezed together over the course of three days isn’t common for me. This happened and I had to give myself time to agree to it. I’ll feel a lot better when it’s over and I know more. At least I hope I will. A girl can still pray for good news and quality medical care.

So, that’s where I’m at this week. One hour at a time. I’ll be back, as I pray for a complete reduction of pain from head to toe.

Have a good week, everyone! 😊

copyright © 2022 by Lisa Marino & Poison In Lethal Doses, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Chronic Insomnia & Trying To Combat Terrorism

I only have a few days to recalibrate before I have to force myself to function like a “normal” human-being. I can’t exactly walk into multiple doctor’s appointments and fall asleep, though that might help the message sink in for some of them. I’ve been trying so hard and today I failed. Epically. I hardly even know what day it is. All I know is that I was in bed last night by 8:45 PM. I was up after 2:00 a.m. due to pain and my cats waking me up, all upset. I couldn’t get the pain to calm down, so I waited for lidocaine and a muscle relaxer to kick in. Once they did, I was out like a light, and I stayed that way. That’s the most disturbing part; I remained asleep and would not have woken up without having a twelve pound cat jumping up onto my head, then to the floor, then back up. She finally made an alarming sound which jolted me awake, and I found myself feeding my cats and trying to figure out who/what/when/where/why and how. I still feel shaky and out of it. Then I saw the news, and I was sick to my stomach.

I’m sick and tired of being sick and tired. But I’m also sick of the violence directed towards Israeli citizens. Yes, it’s the only Jewish state in the world, but it is also home to Christians, Druze, Muslims, and people of other faiths. Every year, during Ramadan, Arabs attack in completely unprovoked ways and they kill people. Whether they themselves live or die, their families are then paid for the rest of their lives as long as a Jew was killed. That’s YOUR tax dollars, no matter where you live, paying a terrorist and their family. How does that make you feel? Are you sitting in comfort over your vote(s)?

For me, I don’t judge based on party affiliations. It isn’t my business and I don’t feel that politics should decide who my friends are, or aren’t, but the murdering of truly innocent people? Yes, that’s my business because those are my people. I would love to see the reaction of people all over the world if Jews suddenly took to the streets with guns, knives, swords, and other illegal weapons and just started taking people out. Here’s the truth; THIS WILL NOT HAPPEN. We’re civilized. We value life. We don’t have “Pay For Slay” programs, because we aren’t sick bastards. We are not evil. Let’s face it; terrorists are evil and they have no religion.

My prayers are with the city of Tel Aviv and those who lost loved ones and have injured loved ones. My prayers are with every single person who had to check in with family to make sure they were safe. Thirteen Israelis have been murdered in less than two weeks, and all I am seeing from the people I know is silence. It makes me question so much about people who claim to be activists or to care about humanity at large. You’ve chosen to leave certain groups out of your activism. That’s selective racism. I am paying attention.

While news comes in from those I know who ARE speaking up, I will experience another night as a chronic insomniac. Worrying about family and friends in so many different countries, all at once, is shattering. I’ll be close to my phone, hoping and praying for news that doesn’t kill more of my soul. Perhaps I’ll even get some work done, and yes, it might be the “too personal” kind, but certain things need to be said and I’ll be damned if I don’t speak up.

Setting my personal health issues aside, of which I’ll have to face some of them next week; I am a writer. I will always be a writer. It just so happens that this time around, the writer is pissed off. Never piss off a writer. We’ve got a way with words. Well, some of us, any way.

copyright © 2022 by Lisa Marino & Poison In Lethal Doses, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Poison In Lethal Doses®™ is a registered trademark.

The Truth, The Pain, The Breakdown, & The Small Breakthrough

Many, many years ago I read ‘An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness’ by Kay Redfield-Jamison. Anyone who suffers from any form of depression, or any form of mental illness (I hate this phrase. It was once referred to, and sometimes still is, as “behaviorial health”. No, this is completely off-base. These phrases don’t explain why your brain is the way it is, and neither does the term, “mental illness”. We’re not crazy; we’re suffering. It isn’t something we’ve done to ourselves, either. Many people unknowingly have chemical imbalances or very real illnesses, like schizophrenia. To lump it all under one category is unfair and disrespectful.) has probably read this book. If you find yourself in Psych 101 or in medical school studying psychiatry, you will also have likely read this book. If your diagnosis is new, grab a copy, even if only through your local library. It’s not the kind of book you would willingly read repeatedly. Once is enough, unless you want to refer back to it for therapy purposes.

I remember reading it and feeling slightly understood, but my story and Kay’s are quite different. Our backgrounds are drastically different. Moreover, I’ve battled this journey almost entirely on my own.

Were you thinking about suicide before age ten? Probably not. The word was never used in my home. Ever. What I felt and observed brought the word forth and gave it meaning. I have spent the majority of said life not being taken seriously for how I think or feel by family, friends, and most especially, by doctors. I left those “friends” behind, and I don’t regret it. I also walked away from judgmental family members who never bothered to take the time to get to the know my heart. And yes, I’ve fired a plethora of psychiatrists, psychologists, and therapists. There’s no shame in my pursuit for appropriate medical care with caring individuals who treat me like a human-being, No matter what illness you’re dealing with, we ALL deserve to be treated fairly. Unfortunately, this is part of the problem; we aren’t.

These past few months have been daunting. I will explain at length in another post, but for now, suffice to say, I’ve reached both a breaking point, as well as a breakthrough. I’m fed up with the world, with life, with the hardcore activism I feel is necessary, with other people’s bullshit, with feeling like the only honest person in the room most days. It’s a LOT, and I’m tired. Physically, mentally, and emotionally SO drained of my life-force that I am having my groceries delivered tonight because getting out of bed makes me feel ten times worse than I already do. I’m fully capable of going and getting them myself, obviously, but today I broke down in pain. Every bone, every muscle, every part of me is screaming in pain. It’s intolerable beyond words. I found some CBD oil hanging around and have used it, to no avail. It doesn’t touch my pain at all.

My pain is at an all-time high because it was triggered, not just by extreme stress which has badly screwed with my body, my health, and my sleep, but by certain types of people who don’t care whether or not they are harming me. My health is of zero concern, and again, I will be writing about it, mostly because this is my website and I get to tell the truth here. I don’t have to be believed by anyone who does not respect or value me, but I do have a job which requires me to be forthcoming. Actually, it doesn’t. You can do what you will as a writer, but my main focus as always been steeped in honesty. Even in my fictional work, anyone who knows the real me knows the truth in those pieces. It’s our personal message to one another, like a wink, because so few people know me that well.

I am using lidocaine patches all over my body to try and stifle some of the agony, when I am not actively taking Kratom to help with the rest. Yes, Kratom is something you’ve probably heard about either on the news or within the pain community. No, it isn’t addictive. Yes, it helps take the edge off. My doctor encouraged me using it because he’s disgusted that my primary care physician ignores my pain. I am contemplating recording this man talking over me whenever I bring up how much I am suffering. Note to self: New doctor, STAT!

I am both sleeping too much and sleeping too little due to chronic insomnia. My pain is worse at night, but if I didn’t sleep well or I moved around too much when I did sleep, I can’t function. By looking at me, no one would ever be able to tell, and that’s where doctors come in to play.

A friend once asked everyone in a group to share the, “Faces of Fibromyalgia”. I was going to, until I saw how truly unwell everyone in the group looked. Photo after photo. Granted, the age group was not even close to my bracket, so perhaps some of that had to do with the way I reacted to the photos. Images that haunt me all these years later. Even without makeup on, I looked like the picture of health, and I still do. People often ask what my secret is. Good genes, water, sunscreen, and having an anti-aging routine which started at age eleven. I actually went through my steps tonight and was mortified. Anyone who wants the steps and a list of products can ask for it; I’m not gatekeeping. Alas, I digress…

Those photos made me feel like this was the reason I wasn’t being taken seriously; I looked, and continue to look, too healthy for doctors and others, to see the struggle. They don’t listen to me because my face does not match what I am saying, and that’s all they’re interested in. Apparently I should crawl into their offices, drool on the floor, be half-dressed, and maybe they’d take me seriously for a moment. God forbid you mention pain and look healthy; it must mean you’re a drug-seeker. 🙄😡 If I was, I’m obviously terrible at it based on my current Kratom order. In fairness, I haven’t placed an order in four months and I was down to half of my supply, so I sort of ordered in a panic. The pain is that bad.

Since the start of Covid, whenever I run errands, I might tap on a bit of eyeshadow and a coat of mascara once I’ve finished applying skincare and sunscreen, but who the hell sees it behind a mask and sunglasses? No one, really. I’ve only seen a few doctors in person during the past two plus years. For some unknown reason, they all remark on how I look in their notes. It’s downright insulting for any doctor to be judging your health based on your appearance. The fact that my headache specialist takes time out of her busy day to comment on how great I look as a patient (A note which goes into my permanent medical record and to my insurance company!), disturbs the fuck out of me. I’m not there for a critique on my looks or speech patterns; I am there for treatment. And every time I’m there, I come away with a lecture of some sort. 🙄 Again, not what I went in for. The last couple of times she was running late, still hasn’t figured out that my name isn’t Stephanie (Or the laundry list of names she goes through before sort-of getting part of my name right. Honestly, she’s looking right at me and I wait until she gets close. Lisa and Elizabeth are NOT the same thing. She’s kind of stuck these days on calling me Mary something, Trust me, I don’t look like a Mary!), and I walk in pissed. If you’re waiting for about two hours on a bad day, you have every right to be annoyed. Each time she’d say, “Oh, I can tell you have a migraine.” Only once did I actually have one worth discussing. More often than not, I leave her office with one. There’s too much stress involved, and I recently told a nurse off for screaming in the office. The first time, I thought maybe she was ill, but I’ve had listen to her do this to others for a year, now. She screams out highly personal information, yells out at people from behind the plexiglass, etc. She called my name and I was about a foot away. I looked at her and said, “I’m standing right here. You do NOT have to yell at me.” For me, that was borderline kind. Her response? “I’m sorry, I didn’t know I was yelling.” Well, you work in a doctor’s office and someone should check your fucking hearing! I’m pretty sure that’s what will come out of my mouth the next time she does it, because she’s a repeat offender and one of the rudest, most judgmental nurses they’ve got.

I had agreed to nerve blocks last year, desperate for some relief, and this last time, I had a vicious reaction to the depo-medrol my doctor forgot to mention was in my injections. I’m not kidding, either. She never even handed me paperwork to describe what I was going through; the only thing I saw and signed was a document giving her permission to treat me and bill directly to my insurance. I asked what was in them at my first appointment, and she said, “Anesthesia. It should last 3-6 months.” I return to her in ten days. This time, I am passing on the nerve blocks completely. I clearly don’t handle steroids well, and as it’s leaving my system, I can tell it wasn’t actually helping a damn thing. It’ll be another appointment where she gets to remark on my looks. “Patient looks normal and healthy, but suffers from chronic, disabling migraines.” I am dead serious; all of her notes state this. The best part is when I read, “Patient is enjoying a reduction in pain.” I am? Is she kidding?! Which “patient” is she talking about? I have to say, it isn’t me. If you read enough of this crap, you stop believing in doctors and their level of honesty.

Even my psychiatrist, who I do video appointments with a few times a month, has to remark on whether or not “the patient” looked normal today. What the hell does that even mean? I’m pretty sure the first time he saw me with no makeup, glasses, and my first breakout in a few years, it was noteworthy. 🙄 I have access to those notes, but have refrained from looking at them because he does take me seriously, but sometimes, when I am feeling as I do now, he looks for ways to push me in a different direction. It’s an unsubtle distraction technique which annoys me, but it’s not any different than taking medication, which can also temporarily distract the mind. At least the medication is a little more straight-forward.

Depression does not discriminate. It can hit anyone, for any reason, at any given moment. It can take you from the highest of highs to twelve feet beneath the surface. That’s kind of where I stay. I’m not on the surface, but I know I am sinking. Throw anxiety on top of that, along with complex trauma, and you have a recipe for disaster. Especially as my anxiety medication is beginning to fail completely. I could take double my daily dosage and still end up hyperventilating. Most people wouldn’t be able to handle the dose I am on, but I hesitate to bring up going off of it and onto something shorter acting. Despite the fact that long-term use of this medication has affected my health to a really bad level. Alas, it’s not visible. I see it. I know the damage is done, I feel it, and I also know I was never warned that any of these long-term side effects were possible. Unlike my doctors, I actually remember what gets said and by whom.

The flipside for my life has always been my writing. Having talent and creativity. Having business sense. The downside is that when I feel like this, I either don’t write, or I am way too honest. I have over two hundred drafts, which is the very definition of “too honest”. There are some things which I openly admit are too personal to share. As things stand, I will be changing the format of how I write and what I say, and I hate knowing that certain things have to change, but change they must. People think blogs and websites are online diaries. If you heard half the things I think, you’d run to the opposite side of the globe. Be glad I sort of employ a filter here. Most of the time, any way.

The other night, due to insomnia, I opened up a fiction file for the first time in months. I’m happy to say I was able to get a few thousand words written. That was the breakthrough; progress through pain, through madness, through the thinnest shred of sanity. I can still do amazing things with the written word. I should be proud of that, but I’m not. Because the pain truly is breaking me down to nothingness.

People don’t always talk about how lonely this journey is. Sometimes I am relieved to live in a place where no one knows me, and other times, it’s so isolating I want to walk into the woods and scream until I have no voice left. Depression, trauma, anxiety, and multiple forms of chronic pain which are incurable.

The other day I realized I am only speaking to four people with any kind of regularity, aside from my doctor. I am grateful for their e-mails, texts, and phone calls. I am grateful for them sticking by me. My best friends have legitimately grown up with me, despite the fact that our relationships are long-distance. We’ve been through so much together. Visits are few, but far between, but they are always on the other end of the line to listen, to share, to talk, and to be real, and the same is true for me. They have been immensely supportive through these past few months where I’ve been made to question who I am, only to be told, “You’re honest, you’re loyal, you’re real, and you’re a fucking bad ass. Anyone who says or thinks differently does not know YOU. The real you. Maybe they don’t deserve to know you at all if they dare question it.”

When you’re sharing something difficult, and emotions are involved, and someone actually steps up and says, “This is NOT your fault and you should not be blamed. This is an awful thing, but it’s no one’s fault. There should be no pointing fingers at all. Remember who you are, and what a fighter you are deep down. You don’t back down, you step up.” Another part of the breakthrough is hearing about who you are through the eyes of those who love you.

So now, my groceries are all put away. My poor Bombay growled like a pit bull at the lovely husband & wife delivery team who I am grateful for. Tomorrow, depending on how I feel, I will whip up a big batch of tabouleh (A key “soul food”, at times.), and try to write a few notes to friends and family. I’m also contemplating a big batch of homemade ice cream, so maybe I can accomplish that this week, as well, even though I have to get five missing ingredients. I pray everything is still available. I only make this once a year and I haven’t done it since 2019, so I would like to see the achievement.

If you don’t see me writing for a while, I might be working on fiction for a bit. Or, I’m going through the motions of life and trying to keep the madness at bay. Who knows. Take care of yourselves, stay safe, and I’ll see you next time.

Shavua Tov,

copyright © 2022 by Lisa Marino & Poison In Lethal Doses, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Poison In Lethal Doses®™ is a registered trademark.

Impolite Zionist

I’m fed up. I’m also sick and tired of this. Leading up to every major Jewish holiday, attacks begin in earnest and it triggers everyone’s PTSD. People I know have spent so much time on the phone of late, trying to track down relatives after each attack. This is not how anyone should have to function, and it makes me angry to a level no one wants to see.

Never have you seen Jews take to the streets in order to murder others. We don’t teach our children to stab people for being of a different faith. We don’t strap our people with bombs to kill as many people as possible and then call them, “martyrs”. 🙄😡 There’s nothing normal about any of this behavior. It’s beyond radicalized. They kill Israelis (Jews are not the only residents of Israel.), and pass out sweets to celebrate. They participate in “Pay For Slay“, which should be illegal. In any other country, these people would be in jail and up on child endangerment and child abuse charges. They would never see the light of day again. Just imagine that kind of abuse going on in America or Canada… (God Forbid!) It would be reported immediately. Especially in a school atmosphere. This is not a, “cultural difference”, this is a true level of sickness. It’s important for me to talk about it so that many people will get a clear picture and understand.

This isn’t a fight over a piece of land smaller than the state of New Jersey. No, it’s about them wanting to annihilate Jews, “like Hitler did”. Those are the words that have been directed towards me, and it usually starts with, “Go back to the ovens. Why did they allow you to survive?” Has that sunk in?

Let’s say you aren’t Jewish, but you are a Zionist (The term “Zionism” was coined in 1890 by Nathan Birnbaum. Its general definition means the national movement for the return of the Jewish people to their homeland and the resumption of Jewish sovereignty in the Land of Israel. Since the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948, Zionism has come to include the movement for the development of the State of Israel and the protection of the Jewish nation in Israel through support for the Israel Defense Forces. From inception, Zionism advocated tangible as well as spiritual aims. Jews of all persuasions – left, right, religious and secular – formed the Zionist movement and worked together toward its goals.); they want you dead, as well. Anyone who isn’t like them. Anyone who isn’t giving them what they want. That’s what they mean when they say, “Globalize the Intifada”. It’s not about land, it’s about wanting Jews to die. The level of hate they carry in their hearts is sick. By all means, support what you choose.

I’ve well and truly had ENOUGH. Terrorism has no religion.

copyright © 2022 by Lisa Marino & Poison In Lethal Doses, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Poison In Lethal Doses®™ is a registered trademark.

“Zionist” definition is fully credited to the Jewish Virtual Library. Photos are credited to @joanofjudea

Loss, Grief, and Solitude

I don’t have much to offer right now. The past few days have been fraught with sad news. My best friend buried her Grandfather (It took a few days for the body to be flown out of the United States to its final resting place.), and the other is burying her father, who passed away this morning. Both lived long lives, but there are mixed emotions for those involved, and I feel it.

These issues bring up my own losses, because I am dealing with a lot of trauma at the moment. As one person said to me, “You know how it is, because you did all of this by yourself.” That’s right; I did. I arranged everything by myself. Two funerals. A headstone. An unveiling. I have not been back since, but I need to go and try to get a feel for things because avoiding it is not helping me.

I remember asking a family member about a word for the headstone and being told, “I’m not paying for it; they weren’t MY parents.” Yeah, my jaw dropped for a second before I composed myself. All I did was ask if they wanted a word added to one side of the stone. I displayed an act of kindness which shouldn’t have been shunned, and yes, I paid for the word and the stone. I showed respect to someone who disrespects me constantly. Nothing has changed in almost thirteen years. I see it, and I’m paying attention. I don’t have to understand why this person chooses to behave this way towards me, I only have to understand and control my response to it.

Grief and loss were once the only things I felt I had to offer others, but not anymore. Now I see myself clearly and I know I am not the cause for these things. In fact, I’m actually the person who will offer someone the most guidance and support. If my pain can help someone else, then I will allow that, but my pain isn’t going to be used against me.

I’ll be back soon, hopefully with better news.

Grieving… It’s A Process

“Do not stand at my grave and weep, I am not there, I do not sleep.
I am in a thousand winds that blow, I am the softly falling snow.
I am the gentle showers of rain, I am the fields of ripening grain.
I am in the morning hush, I am in the graceful rush
Of beautiful birds in circling flight, I am the starshine of the night.
I am in the flowers that bloom, I am in a quiet room.
I am in the birds that sing, I am in each lovely thing.
Do not stand at my grave bereft
I am not there. I have not left.”
―Mary Elizabeth Frye

Three times a year, I pause to honor my mother. Had she lived, she would be seventy-five this year. It’s hard to believe she isn’t here, because of late, her presence has been evident.

Explaining that you’re an orphan to people, especially as an adult, is tough. Not everyone can relate. Far too many people expect you to, “get over it”, and move on as soon as the funeral is behind you, as though someone like a mother is easily forgotten or replaced. This is not the case. Not for me. The grief is real, and it is present in everything I do. Not in a negative way, but in a questioning way.

Unlike a lot of mother/daughter relationships, I do not sit and question if my mother was proud of me. I know she was. She trusted me to handle tough situations, to take care of others, to do the right thing, even when I wanted to scream, and to forge a path no one could ever doubt, not even me. Whenever I had doubts about what I could or couldn’t achieve, she would marvel at my brilliance, not at any potential lack of confidence. Ultimately, I don’t lack confidence, but I do plan things out in a very clear fashion. It’s borderline obsessive, but it’s part of who I am. I would not be able to do these things, or be the person I am, if I hadn’t been gifted with an honest parent from day one.

Parenting today is quite different from my own upbringing. When people tell me how they grew up, I am generally appalled at the lack of diversity, culture, joyful moments, simple moments, the lack of music, theater, and film. Often, the lack of books or regular use of a library also galls me. The lack of any kind of bond between parents and children. Even more so when Grandparents are involved, but cannot or do not choose to be present in their lives. My maternal Grandparents lived across the street from us. I saw them every single day, practically. I never had babysitters; only relatives. My brother grew up differently in many ways, and does not have the same memories. I can mention something from when he was two or three and he has zero recollection of it, whereas I have vivid recollection.

Maybe it’s a cultural thing? Perhaps it is also a location issue. City kids grow up differently than those who grew up in the suburbs, in rural areas, or in tiny places where everyone knows everyone. I definitely wasn’t cut out for anything else, except city life. I’ve been thinking about it a lot, lately. My mother trusted me to let the city be my playground in many respects, but she also said no to many things, and I’m glad she did. I’m almost embarrassed over the things I pushed her on at a young age. To the point where a friend’s mother called her to complain that I was, “too sophisticated” for my age. 🙄 I laugh when I think about it now. I was deemed, “too sophisticated” at thirteen. This other woman said I should, “Still be playing with Barbie dolls and stuffed animals” at that age. 🤣 I remember my mother hanging up from that call and saying, “Thank GOD you’re a teenager and not an infant! What healthy, normal thirteen year old is still playing with dolls?!” She rolled her eyes and assured me I was okay.

I can’t say anything really stood out for me at thirteen, aside from being different and not fitting in. Though, I didn’t care about fitting in, and I still don’t think about it on such terms. Why should I? It was the year I added additional piercings, which officially stopped at twenty-one. It was also a hard time in my life because writing and singing were my only escapes from an abusive home life. Not many people understand that now, either, but I did and I do. We didn’t discuss it outside the family. Family friends knew and certainly saw things weren’t right, but no one ever stood up to my father. No one ever corrected his behavior or told him off. I do not recall anyone EVER standing up for my mother and brother, except me. People, especially family, simply chose to avoid us, as though we all suffered from the plague. Out of sight, out of mind. A few pretended to care once my mother had enough and left, but their support was temporary and disingenuous. To this day, I do not speak to anyone who ever disrespected my parents or Grandparents.

When I think about my mother’s childhood and how she spoke of it with a lot of fondness, I realize I was robbed of mine. Maybe this explains my “sophistication”. 🙄 I was functioning in chaos with an adult mindset, and I remember having these thoughts at about age four. Don’t misunderstand me though; I do not feel sorry for myself about this in any way, shape, or form. I am not angry with my mother for believing she had no other choice, but to stay. I am not angry for being the person who protected her and my brother. To this day, I still protect my brother in many ways.

Yesterday, a family member made the gross misjudgment of trying to tell me how to live my life, how to think and behave, and she took a shot at my parents. Let me be clear; this is one hundred percent NOT ALLOWED. I read this message multiple times and did not respond. Why? Because I was a step away from going from zero to epic bitch. I will not respond at all moving forward. I don’t need anyone to dictate to me, or attempt to use me as a replacement relationship for something lacking in their own life.

If it was her intention to be permanently iced out, she came to the right person. I am my mother’s daughter; you’ll die of frostbite before I give you the time of day ever again. No one gets to criticize my parents, except for my brother and I. We lived it. We get to say how we feel, but outsiders DO NOT. Unless you are living in the world’s most perfect relationship, glass houses shouldn’t throw stones and think it’s acceptable behavior. I will throw back bricks and concrete slabs, and I don’t throw like a girl.

What’s worse is, this person likely has no idea how disrespectful they were being to me, but I won’t sit here and take it. That’s the difference between mother and daughter: I don’t feel obligated to anyone regarding politeness and there’s no one overseeing my behavior. The niceness gene clearly skipped a generation or two. Even my brother would have responded with, “Oh, fuck you.” My response would be far worse, which is why I said nothing. I am kind and fair, but I’ve got boundaries and rules.

I have a short list of untouchable people in my life. My brother, parents, and Grandparents are extremely high on said list. If you were not a constant presence in my life, and did not deal with any of them regularly, then I strongly suggest you keep your mouth shut. If you’re going to persist in disrespecting any of them, I want you to do it to my face so that other people hear you do it and understand why I broke your face. No, I’m not kidding. Don’t let your mouth write a check your ass can’t cash. It’s simple and easy enough for most people with a brain to grasp.

My father used to affectionately refer to me as, “the family pitbull”. No, he wasn’t saying I reminded him of a dog. What he was saying is that once my temper comes loose, he almost felt sorry for the poor bastard on the other side of my wrath. Almost, but not really. It’s a good analogy for being a protector archetype, which matches me to a T.

Mom, thank you for seeing me. Thank you for letting me be my true self. Thank you for showing me that honesty and authenticity would get me further in life than anything else. Thank you for reminding me to be persistent in my goals. But most of all, thank you for having my back and teaching me to have my own back. Those are important tools to have in life. I am grateful to you for preparing me for things I never thought I’d survive.

Today, we plant a tree in your memory, because the memory of you will stay strong and live forever.

Fully credited to Zach Vaughan Photography

copyright © 2022 by Lisa Marino & Poison In Lethal Doses, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Poison In Lethal Doses®™ is a registered trademark. Photo and poem are fully credited, and no profit is being made from either.

Cleansing The Silent Anger

Over the past year, a lot has changed for me. Wonderful things, many wonderful opportunities. Amazing things which I’ve kept quiet about because I firmly believe in not feeding my own ego. I take a victorious moment and then I might share it with my nearest and dearest (Not always.), but I don’t make a big deal out of anything I have worked hard for. Probably because I am a realist; I know how quickly something can go awry, and how easily one can be left with nothing. Also, bragging genuinely isn’t my style. It repulses me.

As I’ve suffered and struggled these past few weeks health-wise, I’ve made some important decisions. I have chosen to do a social media cleanse, to the best of my ability. I refuse to be the person with her phone in her hand constantly throughout each day. Unless it’s work e-mail, it can wait. Hell, most work e-mails were on hold this week until early Friday morning, and if I haven’t answered something, that means I have not seen it. I’ve changed e-mail addresses and would prefer to keep my work and personal life separate.

Social media is mind-numbing and has become an unhealthy habit (for me). During last weekend’s blizzard, I spoke only to two people, and a third briefly checked in after the storm was over and clean-up was stressful. Eventually, I turned my phone off and went to sleep. I took care of ME, and only me. For someone who isn’t selfish, shutting everything down was difficult, but necessary. By Monday, I almost felt cleansed and free, but things quickly escalated and once again, I felt like I couldn’t talk to anyone who did not fully understand where I am coming from. Sometimes people say, “I’m sorry you’re going through this.”, but ultimately the rest of their behavior is clear; they don’t actually care about what you’re dealing with at all. They’re just being polite-ish for the sake of civilized politeness. Most people would not pick up on that shift, but I do. You’ve got to be careful talking to me because I pick up on everything.

Due to my fiercely transparent honesty, I have faced antisemitism and hateful harassment, which extended to death threats. This has been going on since May of last year, when Hamas chose to attack Israel from Gaza. People accused me of being part of a terrorist and apartheid regime. None of these things take place in Israel. It is the most diverse country in the entirety of the Middle East. Alas, new levels, new devils. 😒 It appears many people don’t realize they can be arrested and prosecuted for online hate speech and harassment, and can absolutely have charges pressed against them for death threats. Each threat can mean jail-time, so don’t feel comfortable hating on people publicly. Maybe take it down a hundred notches and read a book or something to distract yourself. Yes, I’m being hella sarcastic.

The threats were such that I took my About page down temporarily then, and again when things started up for a second time weeks ago. I have not seen a single person on WordPress state that any of this is wrong, or let me know where they stand on this subject. I have received zero solidarity from my fellow writers, except for those who are also Jewish. The silence is deafening. The excuses are absurd. Last time I checked, it was 2022. Stand for something or fuck off with your anti-racism bullshit, which is precisely what I said it is, BULLSHIT. It’s selective racism. It is a choice. Google it; I’ve written about it before.

For the past week, Whoopi Goldberg made headlines with some incredibly ignorant remarks regarding race and the Holocaust, resulting in a two-week suspension from The View. She’s worth sixty million dollars, has a distinctly Jewish surname which she chose to take on when her career began (“To get ahead, because Jews have more success in Hollywood.” Seriously?! That statement is untrue.), but she’s going to tell Jews the Holocaust was about white people versus white people, which basically states that racism only occurs between black and white people. She could not be further from the truth if she tried, and other comments she’s made are resurfacing, as well.

I’m kind of numb to the stupidity of this ignorance, especially as a lifelong fan who is genuinely ashamed of her. Let me be honest here; my black, Jewish, and Christian friends are calling for her to be fired. Others want her to be educated. Yad Vashem has reached out to her. The View itself is carrying on like nothing was said; which I find even more despicable. Is this the 2022 Jews have to face? I don’t fucking think so. I adamantly refuse. If you are going to speak about any subject that is sensitive and affects millions of people, at least do your homework before opening your mouth. Most especially when you are well aware of how much Jews have been singled out as targets with the past two years being the worst amounts of hate crimes against Jews since before the Holocaust. Let that sink in.

Cancel culture being what it is, I don’t want fake apologies. I want educated, intelligent, well thought-out apologies if you’re going to be that stupid. I’m baffled by the special treatment aspect of a two week suspension. Really? Two weeks where she is paid and can basically take a vacation? That’s her “punishment”? Not dissimilar to the way Nick Cannon was treated when he also made far more despicable remarks. He was fired, made amends, and was handed his job back. Let me be clear; there’s racism involved in both moves because if a blonde, blue-eyed Republican tore the Holocaust apart on national television, they would be fired immediately. There would be zero hesitation involved, so to hear ABC staffers questioning why she wasn’t fired; yes, there’s a double-standard. If I went on any kind of anti-tangent in an attempt to dictate my way of seeing things in such a manner, not only would I lose my reputation, but I’d be attacked far worse than that. So yes, it’s absolutely about racism at the end of the day, and it makes me ill.

Yeah, it was a heavy month. I am justifiably angry. As such, the social media break is necessary and I’m putting other things into priority status during said break. I’ll be around. I will write again, but I need some time. I feel like this is relatively self-explanatory. It isn’t black and white; this is the grey area.

copyright © 2022 by Lisa Marino & Poison In Lethal Doses, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Poison In Lethal Doses®™ is a registered trademark. Written work by author may not be shared or posted anywhere without express written consent from the author. Excerpts and quotes from author material also requires consent.

Migraine Destruction and Searching For Calm

A brutal migraine began last night, ripping through my skull like a freight train, as I frantically searched for an envelope of documents I have to fill out, not knowing when they are due back. I tore apart all the normal places I keep my documents which require immediate or semi-immediate attention, versus the one’s I file away after they’ve been submitted. It could be anything from health insurance stuff to a letter I wrote to a judge on someone’s behalf. It’s not linear. Because I’ve been a writer for so long, one can only describe my system as, “organized chaos”. I will try getting my shit together this year in terms of paper organization and clothing organization. I made this promise to myself about six months ago and I feel like I’m doing my best. Nothing is perfect, of course. Least of all, me.

Last summer, I focused on the small stuff, which began with makeup organization. I am slowly distancing myself from brand consulting and the beauty industry on a whole. It’s embarrassing, but much like paperwork, it was all accumulating in an insane manner, and the best thing to do was break it all down so I could see precisely what I own. Now I get to short through what can be donated or gifted. I still have a few months to deal with that craziness.

To calm myself down today, despite having to cancel my Telehealth appointment at the last minute because this migraine is unmanageable (Two doses of Ubrelvy and I am still not okay. I didn’t want to be disrespectful of his time via video when I know I’d be doing it in sunglasses, trying not to expel food onto my laptop.), I decided to call the person who needs the documents I can’t find (They didn’t grow legs, but if they’re needed before I locate them, that’s going to be a big issue.). I asked her to send them ASAP. She and I will speak at our appointed time, and hopefully she’ll have gotten my message and sent the forms back out so I can tackle them immediately. Normally, they would not be necessary, but she’s merely an intermediary on this level, so I aim to be respectful and do my due diligence.

There will always be migraines I can function through and others I genuinely can’t. Unfortunately, this makes people assume that chronic migraine isn’t a serious condition. It is. This pain is coming and going, currently taking up residence in my neck. This is the result of too much stress. I am burnt out beyond words and I still have so much I need to do. There’s no want involved in tackling things I have to do; it’s the result of having responsibilities. They must be dealt with. They won’t take a vacation, so I’m stuck doing it all until I can make time to be away.

I mentioned responsibilities for a reason. I had money set aside for a trip to Israel. I was thrilled to plan it after Covid was over. I’m not sitting on a plane for all those hours in a mask. I think I’d drop dead halfway through. No, I’m not being dramatic. Anxiety is very real and lately, I have had struggles at times with keeping myself calm. I am only allowed to wear cloth masks and they don’t always feel safe, plus, they do impede my breathing. Then I took Cat and Kitten to the vet for a checkup and their vaccinations. Cat requires non-emergency surgery. The vet told me how much it would be, and my vacation money was automatically swallowed up. That’s okay; because she needs the medical care and I’d never deny that to her. I’m not a horrible person who would abandon her because she needs a procedure. That’s like abandoning your child because they aren’t perfect. I’ll work twice as hard and when I do get to plan the trip, it’ll be an even better one. Maybe because I’ll be feeling better (G-d, do you listen to me?), or because I will feel less stressed. I might even have more energy to do the things we’d originally planned; much of which involves a ton of walking and climbing. I used to walk like the world was my playground, and now I have to pace myself for every mile I tack on. I thought about asking someone to go with me, but I am SO excited to see my best friend/sister, and feel I should go solo because I don’t want anyone to cut into my time with her, especially since she and I are a tiny team with our own language and just how we treat one another. According to my horoscope and tarot readings, it will be my last solo trip, which is empowering in so many ways because I was encouraged at a very young age not to be afraid to do things by myself. I’ve been flying all my life. Despite the extra security protocols, being searched like I was a terrorist at DFW International, and slightly at Philadelphia International, I am pretty good the second I am packed and mentally in vacation mode. It’s harder to leave my vacations than it is to pack up and go. Countries search you less when you’re leaving, but when you arrive? Be prepared for a potential hold-up. Especially if, like me, you take one suitcase that is predominantly empty, except for an extra pair or two of shoes (I always pack two pairs of sneakers and something fancier. Sometimes I will travel with the nicest pair on, to make room in that second suitcase. I’ll throw in socks and toiletries to make my intentions clear.). I do that to have room for anything I purchase while I’m away. My carryon is generally overloaded, just like my purse. It’s worth it, even though it leaves my shoulders with bruises for two weeks.

As is typical when I’m dehydrated and trying to focus on getting rid of this migraine, and a potential blizzard approaching this weekend, I am going to do my best. I can’t do more than that. I have various pieces in the works and have taken a break from the manuscripts because of how sick I’ve been. Hopefully it’ll pass soon and I will be able to return to that which is best for me.

I cannot express enough how important it is to take care of yourself, even if it means saying no, cancelling plans, etc. I honestly felt awful and apologized to my doctor profusely, but I also know he understands that if I cancel, it’s bad. His office did get back to me to say he had no openings, but that I have appointments booked for next month. Yes, I was well aware of that, and will reach out to him if there’s an issue between now and then.

I swear, January has felt like the past year. I hate it beyond words, and might touch on that in the future, but for now, I’m taking my own advice. Water. Rest. More rest. Then I am going to try tackling my mother’s vegetable soup recipe. I know it by heart, but sometimes I’m obsessed with making it perfect. However, it is healthy, comforting, nourishing, and that’s really what I need in my life right now. If I can’t get support from people who are in my life (and some who are about to get nosebleed seats), then I can at least have a huge pot of soup to sustain me. Also, does anyone else need ice cream during a blizzard? Just me? C’est la vie. We’ve all got our priorities and weird cravings.

For everyone in the path of these storms, please stay safe and be well. For those not about to endure it, count your blessings and be well and safe. None of you are alone.

Much love,

copyright © 2022 by Lisa Marino & Poison In Lethal Doses, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Poison In Lethal Doses®™ is a registered trademark. Written work by author may not be shared or posted anywhere without express written consent from the author. Excerpts and quotes from author material also requires consent.