Positively Honest

I would love to sit down and write hearts and flowers nonsensical prose, but right now, it isn’t where I am. Also, if I ever DO write anything remotely like that, please send men in white coats to do a psych eval.

Life is crazy at the moment. My primary care doctor is leaving, so even though I will be handed off to another physician during the remainder of Covid (Someone to authorize three of my prescriptions a month and handle a few referrals.), I will still need to find a new doctor for post-Covid care. 😦 This sounds like no big deal, but could take 6-18 months in total. I’m talking from experience. It will be my fourth primary care doctor, too. If you’ve been lucky enough to never have to change doctors, kudos to you, but I have lived in many different places and in each place, I’ve needed a new doctor. In Massachusetts, primary care physicians aren’t very good, so this should explain why I am extremely nauseated at the idea of a fourth one since moving here.

I’ve been dealing with self-induced stress, because I am always in fight or flight mode. It’s not a good place to be, but it’s how you survive, sometimes with (or without) lasting damage. I am doing my best to pull myself out of the quick sand. I’ve asked no one for help, nor have I discussed this with anyone. My independent streak about many things is taller than I am, but at the end of the day, no one else can credit themselves for digging me out of my own pain and suffering.

I’ve made some important decisions over the past six months. “Invest in yourself” is the best advice I can offer up to anyone, at any stage of their life, and I am proud of myself for following through on this, and continuing to make investments as I move forward. A few more steps and I’ll be sharing a whole new venture with all of you. One I know will be better at maintaining connection. 🙂

In the past year, I’ve realized connection, in all forms, is quite important to me. I can’t express enough disgust at those who’ve not even bothered to check in or ask if I’m okay. That’s doing less than the bare minimum in a friendship, and I don’t need friends like that. I am not a surface level friend in any way, shape, or form. I like depth, partly because I can talk about anything, but have no patience for small talk. I catch myself tuning out the second the subject matter isn’t of a higher level. It’s sad, really, because far too many people prefer to stay surface level. It’s boring.

When all of this craziness began last year, I reached out to everyone I consider a close friend or family member, and I included a few people I’m not the least bit close with anymore, because it doesn’t mean I’ve stopped caring. It was disheartening to watch, as the year came and went, very few people remain connected. It must be nice to live in your own bubble and not care about anyone else (Yes, that’s sarcasm.). I can’t relate to that kind of behavior because, as a writer, I live inside my head, but I do come out to check on those in my world. I don’t pretend I’m too busy or that a text or a few lines of an e-mail is too much work for me to fit into my day. That would be bullshit. I can track how much time I spend promoting on social media, and I can always reduce that time, or multitask.

I am learning that it’s perfectly okay to move on without closure. I am learning how to do this because I don’t aim to come off as a bitch. It isn’t who I am, but am I ending friendships which, if you follow the Marie Kondo philosophy, aren’t bringing me joy? HELL YES. Especially if there’s nothing to hold onto.

Friendship, and all relationships, are built on a foundation. If both of the people involved aren’t doing the work, why should one person alone carry all the weight? They shouldn’t. I will not allow myself to feel guilty for cutting people off. Clearly, no one cares enough to even realize they’ve been cut off, so it goes.

I have to thank all of the new subscribers. It is such a joy to reach out to you and realize I AM connecting with a broader audience. I appreciate all of you. Every time I log in and see new subscribers, I feel proud of what I’ve been doing with this site. Many readers have been with me for YEARS, and I feel blessed knowing I still keep you reading. I’m never 100% sure why, but I do feel that people relate, and therefore, they connect to the things I talk about.

Of late, my time has been spent in rewrites. I am trying to complete a novel for sale. Not because I have to, but because I want to establish growth. I read plenty of fiction (The darker, the better.), but writing it is different. My entire career has been based on truth, and I feel confident in the things I have written which have made an impact on others. I’m not good when boxed into one category, because I know I can do more than that.

I remember, quite vividly, shredding years and years of fiction before I moved away from home. If I think back to those days, I remember trying to develop compelling characters. It was, quite frankly, a never-ending story that I eventually saw for what it was. Thus, the shredding. Coming out of that experience shuddering, and embarrassed, I knew any fictional work I might do in the future would have to grab the attention of the reader immediately. I’ve already got editors breathing down my neck for this novel, so I’ve thrown myself head first into rewriting and developing the characters into multifaceted jewels.

I am confident in how the process is going. Instinctively, I know when something is working and when it is not. I trust my own judgment. Someone recently told me that because I trust my judgment, I don’t seek approval from others. They were accurate in this assessment. I will only ask questions if I’m unsure about something, and this rarely pertains to what I write. I write specific material, but I know a lot of my personality shines through. Sarcasm, humor, and wit, can all be involved in serious subjects. If you lose those things, you lose the individual voice.

Other things are happening, too. I am looking at almost all of it as positive. Sometimes, things occur and I am reminded of my strengths and how much I can achieve. Those are good moments, but we all have to take a step back at times and remind ourselves to achieve without feeding the ego, the superego, or the Id. I have watched people, over the past few years, truly feed their superego and it is such an immense turnoff. I choose not to say anything to them because you can’t talk someone down from that level. It slowly becomes a disease and I’m not trained to deal with everyone’s disease-feeding. Factor in that we all know someone who has reached this level of narcissistic behavior, and they now feel free to share their hideousness with the world. Over time, it is shown for the cancer on society it truly is. Add in closet racists and it’s very easy to see why many people choose to fully back away from society at large.

Wishing you all a wonderful week ahead. Mine involves some stress. I am meeting a new doctor this week (a specialist) and have had the appointment for five months. Before I got an appointment, I waited eight months just to get the phone call! Here’s hoping it goes off without a hitch. Fingers crossed.

Boker Tov,

copyright © 2021 by Lisa Marino & Poison In Lethal Doses, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. Written work by author may not be shared or posted anywhere without express written consent from the author. Excerpts and quotes from the material also require consent. This authors’ work and personal photos are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws. Further protection is under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Musings Credited to Insomnia, Migraines, & Humidity

As I went over the feed for this month, I noticed the photo challenge is garnering a nice amount of attention. 😊 Possibly more than the inspirational things I normally share on a semi-regular basis. 🤔 I’ve also noticed that, each time I’m able to write, the statistics go up even further. Mind you, I’m doing all of this from my phone. Not too shabby. I am grateful to my readers and happy to report an increase in readership. All things taken into consideration, it’s pretty fantastic. 😘

I’m going to expand the photo challenge for another month, perhaps two. After going through my photo albums, I realized I have so many beautiful photos I’ve never shared. I didn’t think anyone would care, really. They’re absolutely stunning in color, but there’s something about black and white that allows you to see a different layer of beauty.

Editing them and then saving them into black and white is a little time consuming, but it’s worth it. Can you believe this started as a seven day challenge presented to me about two years ago? Expanding it, if one is able to do so, and has the photos, is far more interesting. Especially since part of the challenge is in not disclosing the locations, yet many are obvious, like Yankee Stadium or the Empire State Building. There are iconic locations in many of the photos, and in others, you’d be hard pressed to pinpoint exactly where the photo was taken. Part of me was tempted to post the black and white AND color versions, because there’s so much beauty to be seen in the differences, but I think I’ll keep things as they are, for now. I might eventually disclose the locations of each photo. I haven’t decided yet.

img_20190629_230518_681

I’ve been having a difficult time sleeping. I have had a migraine for almost eleven days straight (after an extremely successful run of treatment, this feels like an enormous setback. Even better, the abortive I fought for isn’t helping. I am going to see if my doctor can get the brand approved since the generic is a little too different for me.), and it’s taking a toll on me. I’m researching a new medication (to me) and trying to decide if it’s an acceptable choice. I am hoping to enter the final phase of a clinical trial for PTSD medication, as well. I’ll know more at some point. I may or may not be permitted to mention the logistics if the drug isn’t already on the market. But hey, it’s worth a shot. I’m willing to try something if it can help me move forward, though I expect nothing.

My brother is scheduled for heart surgery next week. 😔 They claim he’ll go home the same day (Healthcare in America. 😒😠), but I have my concerns and suspicions. Obviously, I am praying for good results. 🙏 Otherwise, someone will be on the news next weekend. 😒 I’m probably voted “Most likely to kill a doctor” on a list somewhere. Most of them are smart enough to run in the opposite direction. 🤷

I am trying to wrap my head around everything that’s been going on in my life and things that have directly affected my loved ones. There’s been sudden loss of life, which left my best friend & I in tears, comforting each other from thousands of miles away. In constant truth, G-d Bless her. I don’t know what I’d do without her or her supportive words. When you have a friendship which started out so long ago, it occasionally feels like “just yesterday”. The shared memories and history, the laughter, the tears, and so much more, are a bond of truth. You can wave goodbye to the flakes and fakes of the world when you have solid relationships with others; the kind that always grow and age like the finest of wines. The kind you’re constantly grateful for, because 2-3 times a day, you thank G-d for blessing you with a handful of solid friends. G-d didn’t see fit to give me biological sisters, but he placed some extraordinary people in my life, and it bears repeating; I’m constantly grateful. Keep in mind, friendship is 50/50. Sometimes it’s 70/30 when one of you is going through a crisis, and that’s okay because your bond ensures that the center will hold. 

Things are changing in positive ways. It helps distract one from the minor, negativity I’ve rid myself of. Eventually I WILL talk about it, but for now, I just want to focus on me. Not in a selfish or egotistical manner. Mostly in a head and heart kind of way, which I think is important.

And so, for the month of June, I’m done. I’m ready to move forward, keep growing, stay focused, and keep myself in a position to accept that I’m not a one trick pony. I do more than write; I create. I utilize that creativity and I’m SO glad I started filming and getting myself prepared for another phase. There’s a lot up the road. I am excited for it all.

Talk to you in July.

li

© 2019 by Lisa Marino and Blackbird Serenity, LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

 

 

Never Underestimate The Pain

thepainofaperson

My physical, mental, & emotional agony trump a lot of other things at the moment. I’m, quite possibly, not clear-headed enough to write this properly, so please, bear with me. I’ll correct anything that I post that needs to be fixed later on.

I sit here terribly sleep-deprived, covered in varying degrees of bruises (some are healing, some are fresh), and my physical pain is worse than I ever imagined possible. And yet, none of it compares to what’s going on inside my head. 😦 For the past week, I have been pushed way beyond my limits and comfort zone. On the plus side; I’ve walked away from some very negative things that were causing me severe physical, mental, and emotional illness that I wasn’t even aware was happening until that final step away, when I took my first clean, stress-free breath and realized I hadn’t felt free in years. On the downside; the move I was trying to put off in order to take care of Patient X  until he is fully healed is coming up sooner than I thought possible.

As of this past Monday, 95% of my stuff is in storage. My temporary “safe place” is a hotel; the only pet-friendly one I could find. The room is fantastic, but the walls are closing in on me. Again, I’m stressed and sleep-deprived. This morning I felt so weak, I went back to sleep, something I’m trying in earnest NOT to do because it exacerbates my insomnia.

17766_970840139616575_5329463854999952890_n

Patient X’s first post-op appointment went surprisingly well. He is healing properly, mostly due to the fact that I’m OCD and constantly repeating myself so that he’ll listen at least one time out of ten. Unfortunately, his “young pain receptors” are having trouble with the really painful aspects of such a complicated and delicate surgery, so his pain medication was changed at yesterday’s appointment. I’m not thrilled with the choice, but so far, it is working.

I went to three different pharmacies for this drug and when I finally found one willing to fill it, they damn near told me to go back to Philly and fill it there. It is the store’s policy that certain drugs be filled “closer to the prescribing hospital”, as if people have a choice as to where they’re operated on or not! They were willing to do it this time because I’d called in advance, which apparently made them nervous (I think they called security several times, an absolute FIRST, and I’m a pain patient, so I was floored.). I’m not about to apologize for calling with a legitimate question. Lord knows I showed up less than ten minutes after calling with the script, the patient, and his driver’s license to prove it wasn’t being sold on the street. They weren’t going to fill it until they realized he’s A) wearing a Life Vest and B) talked with him about why it was prescribed. Not cool Walgreens, not cool AT ALL, especially in light of the medication you filled without batting an eye for several patients who showed up after me, one of which is something I feel should be outlawed, but I’m not judging the fact that people need it.

Walmart & Target: you should both carry this drug that I desperately needed to acquire immediately, even if only in small quantities. Post-op patients need access to pain medicine that their surgeons prescribe. It’s completely unacceptable to tell them you can order it “in a week”. What are they supposed to do in that week? Hang around with a thumb up their ass?! NO ONE should be forced to suffer because you’ve decided not to carry medication legally prescribed by a physician. By doing shit like that, you’re trying to override a doctor’s right to prescribe and you don’t have the authority to do so. I was so annoyed by the time the medication was paid for that I damn near flipped my lid, and I can only partially blame that on low blood sugar.

fineline

Sunday is “moving day”. Some of my clothes & electronics, Cat, Kitten, and I are moving nearly five hours up north. Life as I know it is changing drastically, and I am not happy about the “rug pulled out from beneath my feet” feeling. Yes, I will adapt and yes, I will adjust. I will pull myself together and dust myself off over these next few weeks/months, mainly because stress can do horrible things to the body, mind, and soul. Someone told me on Monday that if I don’t take care of myself, I could do irreparable damage. She herself was so stressed around this time last year that she had to re-learn how to walk. I don’t want to reach that level of stress, so I need to get on the self-care diet of putting myself first for a few hours every single day.

Once I move, there will be a period of time where I will have to back-date things I write for this platform because I am not 100% sure when I’ll have Internet access, however, things will be written & posted as soon as humanly possible. Let’s hope the wait isn’t too long, lest I lose my marbles. There is such a thing as “too much silence” after a big move. The only books I have are on my Kindle Fire (every book I own is sadly, in storage. My poor babies!), and all of my music is packed, so I will be living off of what’s saved on my laptop and phone until I’m back for good. You simply never know when I will need to listen to Taylor Swift on a loop and cry.

I will miss all of you during “the dark period”, but know that I’ll be back the second the technician plugs everything in. I’ll be in touch before I leave. Be sure to check my Twitter feed and for those that need to know, my cell # and e-mail address will not be changing.

Laters, peeps!

copyright © 2015 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

Only Ignorant People Walk Away From Greatness

“Dignity
/ˈdignitē/ noun

1. The moment you realize that the person you cared for has nothing intellectually or spiritually to offer you, but a headache.

2. The moment you realize God has greater plans for you that don’t involve crying at night or sad Pinterest quotes.

3. The moment you stop comparing yourself to others because it undermines your worth, education, and your parent’s wisdom.

4. The moment you live your dreams, not because of what it will prove or get you, but because that is all you want to do. People’s opinions don’t matter.

5. The moment you realize that no one is your enemy, except yourself.

6. The moment you realize that you can have everything you want in life. However, it takes time, the right heart, the right actions, the right passion, and a willingness to risk it all. If it is not yours, it is because you really didn’t want it, need it, or God prevented it.

7. The moment you realize the ghost of your ancestors stood between you and the person you loved. They really don’t want you mucking up the family line with someone that acts anything less than honorable.

8. The moment you realize that happiness was never about getting a person. They are only a helpmate towards achieving your life mission.

9. The moment you believe that love is not about losing or winning. It is just a few moments in time, followed by an eternity of situations to grow from.

10. The moment you realize that you were always the right person. Only ignorant people walk away from greatness.”

―Shannon L.Alder 

Blank, Empty, Devoid

11013046_631719516963888_2599131454611204986_n

There have certainly been times in my life where I’ve been devoid of all emotion, except maybe anger. Sometimes rage fuels me to be stronger, better, smarter, faster. I worry sometimes that therapy weakened me, taking my strengths as a woman and turning me into a neutered puppy. But lately, due to serious concerns about my health, I am starting to feel devoid of so much. Not just emotion, but everything. I’m a pretty fearless woman, but when I’m sick every single day from stress and I don’t act on my thoughts because I know they will only result in broken bones, it distracts me from the goal at hand.

I haven’t said anything at all because this is not a personal place, though I think some would disagree and say that my writing is VERY personal. I don’t perceive it as being anything more than me being me, and allowing others to take it or leave it. But I digress; I am about to embark on a huge change in my life. It is going to take every ounce of internal, physical, and emotional strength I have left. It will not be easy. In fact, I expect it to be yet another bloody battle. I really wanted to get away from sword-sharpening and focus on my goals for the next few years, but all of that has been stripped from me, albeit temporarily. Now, all I am able to do is take things one day at a time.

Part of having Fibromyalgia to this extent means accepting help that is offered with a genuine heart. I’m finally seeing a few genuine hearts, as opposed to the kind that do something in the moment and then throw it back in your face at the most inopportune time. I’m shedding the toxic, negative people in my life and embracing the supportive, positive, loving people. I cannot deal with the bullshit or drama that comes with that constant negativity, period.

I will be slightly less present on here at times as I pack up my current life, weeding it down to the bare necessities, in preparation for the next phase. I will take time to mourn what I thought would be best for me, and embrace that which is new. Sometimes doors DO close, but dwelling on that is unhealthy. I have to believe that there is a different purpose for me, even if now, it simply feels like an immense inconvenience.

I know not everyone here is religious or spiritual, but if you’re the praying type, please keep me on the positive side of your prayers. I am sick, praying daily that I do not get worse, and that the change I am about to make is, overall, healthy and smart.

Nothing in life is perfect. Nothing in life is truly permanent, not even death. There will always be good things happening to bad people and bad things that happen to really good people. It’s twisted, it is senseless, but it’s unfortunately a part of life. All I can do is take each day as it comes and give it my best. If “my best” means staying in bed and asking for help, then so be it. I’m not here to compete with anyone and I’m certainly not walking around believing I am better than anyone else. I’m human. Take it or leave it, and if you leave, I really don’t care if the door breaks your tailbone on the way out.

I will check any messages sent to me and respond as soon as I can, but for now, I have no real answers. Each day brings different stressors and honestly, all I want is a problem solver. Alas, life does not work like that.

I pray that as this week comes to a close, I am able to solve the most pressing issues quickly. Wish me good luck. XO.

 

copyright © 2015 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

11136684_10153185558768607_1863776625703012099_n

 

 

 

A Short Week

10703844_401801919968760_6389694363137337461_n

A Short Week

As we steadily approach Thanksgiving here in the States, it means a short work week for many, and for others, it means a miserable time of year where you have no choice, BUT to work because you work in a mall or an individual store that will be absolutely PACKED as of Thursday afternoon or early evening. Retail employees should be paid quadruple during this time of year, it makes me cringe knowing the conditions they are forced into and the schedules that take them away from their families.

I know some people think I am “so lucky” to work for myself. In some ways, this is true. I set my own hours and I choose the jobs I want, but it also means I have to work my tail off on every single job, or I am completely unable to pay my bills. Some years are definitely better than others. Here’s hoping the holiday season leaves me booked solid, and with some decent eBay sales to help keep me moving in the right direction.

I’m still not feeling great. Today was pretty awful, so I am glad I took the time to rest and focus on myself for a little while, without pressuring myself and allowing negative thoughts to enter my mind.

Sometimes I think if we keep moving forward, we move towards better things, better people, better situations, inevitably moving towards the finish line of each goal we set.

May every goal you set for yourself, however large or small, not be hell to attain.

copyright © 2014 by Lisa Marino & Blackbird Serenity LLC. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

10734249_402020623280223_8486470869045597962_n